A plan to redevelop a health centre to include 'luxury housing' has been slammed for "reeking of real estate before health".

The Temple Fortune Health Centre, which comprises two GP surgeries in Temple Fortune Lane, has submitted an application to demolish the building and replace it with a four-storey block with a replacement health centre.

Some 22,000 patients will be moved to temporary premises if the application is approved by Barnet Council's planning committee.

Several objections have been lodged on the council's planning portal, with a deadline set for tomorrow (June 23). 

These include loss of light and privacy, the "overwhelming, overbearing" design, additional stress on parking and the loss of a "dedicated landmark building".

Others say it's already "hard enough to get appointments".

The centre, which includes PHGH Doctors and Temple Fortune Medical Group, is co-owned by GP Dr Karen Grossmark and Dr Leora Harverd, who say the existing centre is "not fit for purpose" and a replacement "absolutely vital".

Objector Alan Dein said that there had been "zero consultation" with patients and the development was packaged as a 'fait accompli'.

He said: "They've got these plans, working with a big developer and want to build this huge building that is really out of context with the whole area on the edge of the suburbs."

He said that while the site is not in the Hampstead Garden Suburb conservation area it is across the road and overlooking it.

He added: "A lot people are really upset because it's potentially a site for a really creative health centre, but instead it's basically real estate.

"Even in their ground floor planning a big chunk of the land space is taken up for a private gym for the people who live above. 

"It reeks of real estate before health."  

The centre said with no funding from the NHS, the only way to deliver the new ground floor health centre was with 11 flats on three storeys above it.

They said they had "consulted extensively with the local community".

Dr Grossmark said: “The new health centre we are proposing is absolutely vital. 

"Our patient list has increased from 6,000 to 22,000 patients and local healthcare need continues to grow.

"The space we have in the building is not efficient and it is not appropriate for a 21st century practice. 

"We desperately need to replace this building. It is not obvious to patients and visitors, but it is falling apart around us.”

She said the practice can only identify appropriate sites for a temporary surgery once planning permission is approved. 

She added: "Once a local and accessible site has been identified, we are required under the Health Act to consult with patients extensively about the temporary move."