A HEALTH centre will almost double in size as part of a more than £2 million scheme.

A sizeable extension will be created to the rear of The Harbours Medical Centre, Cockenzie.

No date has yet been unveiled for when work could start on the project, which has been welcomed by councillors and the village’s community council.

Councillor Fiona O’Donnell, who represents the Preston Seton Gosford ward and is East Lothian Council’s spokeswoman for health and care, was among those happy to see the long-awaited scheme moving forward.

She said: “I am pleased that this next stage has been reached in the improvement and expansion of services at The Harbours practice.

“This is good news for patients but also the staff who work in the building.

“I visited the practice to see for myself how their ability to offer services was impacted by the physical environment.

“I want to take this opportunity to thank all of the team at The Harbours for all their efforts through the pandemic restrictions, and most recently in providing flu vaccines to the most vulnerable in our community.”

Plans for the project were submitted to the local authority in November last year.

Currently, the building, which dates back to the 1970s, is home to five consulting rooms, as well as two doctor rooms.

However, the plans will see the number of rooms at the centre swell considerably.

Drawings included within the planning application show there will be six new GP consulting rooms, with another created through changing the use of a room.

Other facilities within the extension include two treatment rooms, two community consulting rooms and a health education room.

The new development at the Avenue Road facility was also welcomed by Councillor Lachlan Bruce, who also represents the Preston Seton Gosford ward.

He said: “This is, of course, good news that we are one step closer to the much-needed extension to the medical centre going forward.

“I hope that this comes to fruition quickly and we can see the capacity of the medical centre increase so that some of the pressures that exist within the service can be alleviated.”

Alison MacDonald, chief officer for East Lothian Health and Social Care Partnership, was pleased to see things moving forward.

She said: “We are still developing plans for the extension of Cockenzie and Port Seton Health Centre so details are still to be finalised.

“This will be a positive step forward for the local community as it will create more capacity to provide high-quality care close to home.”

Bryan Hickman, chairman of Cockenzie and Port Seton Community Council, described the announcement as “all positive”.

He said: “It is very much welcome and long overdue.

“It will be a great help to everybody that lives here and the people that work there.

“I believe that potentially people from Blindwells could go there until it gets established as well.”