WELLINGTON Medical Centre’s patient group has accused Boots of “poor planning” and “disregard” for customer service over the closure of its Mantle Street pharmacy.

After Boots made the decision to close one of its two pharmacies in the town, its remaining High Street store became inundated with customers attempting to collect their prescriptions, who allegedly got caught up in queues of around an hour long.

Now the patient participation group has hit out at the high street chain, accusing them of failing to think ahead before closing the pharmacy which was situated beside the medical centre, which they say previously supplied the majority of prescriptions.

John Cutting, vice-chair of the group told the Wellington Weekly: “The store manager said ‘The High Street is currently waiting for a refit to allow for the increase in patients, storage equipment and staff’. All this demonstrates is extremely poor planning and little regard for customer service.

“Patients have known for months that Boots at the medical centre was due to be closed on the February 17 and we assume that it was in Boots’ plans before that. The Boots at the medical centre processed the majority of prescriptions issued.

“Therefore if any planning had been carried out by Boots, then the assumption must be that they would have known the potential problems and therefore any refit as mentioned should have taken place before the pharmacy at the medical centre was closed.

“A future refit appears to indicate that Boots are now being forced to react to the concerns of the patient community. Boots will certainly struggle to ‘now’ convince patients that this was part of a long term plan.

“What is not mentioned is there seems to be no response to the lack of provision for disability access to the Boots store. They can refit the store to possibly improve access, but they cannot replace the disabled parking and ease of access into the store.

“Boots seem to have retreated 50 years into the past with regards to the provision of customer service for patients with a disability or mobility problems.”

Boots have been contacted for comment.