Horton Maternity Services

babyOxfordshire Clinical Commissioning Group (OCCG) and Oxford University Hospitals NHS Trust (OUHFT) are working together to address the outcome of the referral to the Secretary of State regarding the permanent closure of consultant-led maternity services at the Horton General Hospital in Banbury.

We want to keep you informed and involved throughout our work going forwards. Therefore information, press releases and regular updates on next steps regarding Horton Maternity Services, will be posted regularly on this page. 

In addition, a Frequently Asked Questions page is now available here.


(newest first)



26 September 2019

Read the press release on the Board decision to continue with a midwife led unit at the Horton General Hospital

26 September 2019

The OCCG’s Board meeting will take place on 26 September and a decision will be made about the future of maternity services at the Horton General Hospital. 

18 September 2019

NHS England have written to OCCG to provide their assurance that the CCG has delivered what was required by the Secretary of State and the Independent Reconfiguration Panel:

NHS England Letter Service Reconfiguration

Thames Valley Clinical Senate Assurance

16 September 2019

Below is the OCCG board paper outlining the recommendations for the Horton Hospital. These will be discussed at the Horton Joint Health Overview and Scrutiny Committee meeting on 19 September.

The Chair of the Horton Joint Health Overview and Scrutiny Committee published an addendum to the papers  Chairman’s Addendum.

OCCG have responded to the Chair of the Horton Joint Health Overview and Scrutiny Committee:

OCCG response to Chair Addendum

OCCG Board papers below:

OCCG Board Paper on Maternity Services

Appendix 1a: Senate Assurance

Appendix 1b: NHS England Letter Service Reconfiguration

Appendix 2: Response from OUH

Appendix 3: Pragma Report

Appendix 4: Costing of the two options

26 June 2019

Papers to be presented to the Horton HOSC meeting on 4 July 2019.

Cover paper

Report on the survey

workforce analysis

financial analysis

Option appraisal and outcome

Small obstetric hospitals

Keep the Horton General have produced a report on small obstetric hospitals that is referred to in the OCCG paper above. Their full report is available here.

18 June 2019

The second stakeholder event took place on Friday 14 June 2019. The results of the option appraisal was shared at the event and a commitment was made to publish the following:

  • The information and evidence used by the Scoring Panel is available in three parts. Please note that some information in the pack was draft at the time of sharing.

              Information pack sent to panel members in advance of the first meeting

              Financial information to support scoring criteria 7 

              Answers to questions raised by members of the panel (to follow)

              Information shared to help the panel complete the scoring:

                          NHS Long Term Plan

                          Maternity vision

                          Additional information about clinical outcomes 

  • The spreadsheet showing the scores agreed by the panel for each criteria for each option. Each box shows a number between 0 and 4. This number was agreed by the panel to be the consensus score. For a small number of boxes, a score was agreed by the majority of the panel with one member only agreeing with a caveat that the score was not one they could support. Keep the Horton General were invited to participate in the scoring process. They nominated a representative to join the panel and participate in the two meetings of the panel but chose not to score individually.  The individual scores of each panel member have not been published but if you hover your mouse/cursor over each box you will be able to see the spread of scores.
  • The results of the criteria weighting that was completed during the second stakeholder workshop but was held confidential until after the scoring exercise had been completed.
  • The ranked options showing the final score for each option after the weighting had been applied.
  • The report on the survey, focus groups and interviews with women who have given birth during the time of the temporary closure of obstetric services at the Horton General Hospital in Banbury. 
  • The data set of the survey. 
  • The presentation slides used at the second stakeholder event:

                      Main presentation

                      Survey presentation

14 June 2019

Oxfordshire Clinical Commissioning Group (OCCG) is today sharing an update on a review of options for the future of maternity services in the county that will help in making decisions later this year.

A panel of hospital and primary care clinicians from Oxfordshire, NHS managers, local campaigners and women’s representatives have been ‘scoring’ a number of possible options for how and where maternity services could be provided - with special focus on the Horton General Hospital in Banbury.

The two top scoring options are within 0.11 points of each other; the top scoring option is for two obstetric units in Oxfordshire – one
 in Oxford and one in Banbury - each with an alongside Midwifery Led Unit (MLU) – this option scored 243.7. The option coming a close second is the current model of one obstetric unit in Oxford and a standalone MLU in Banbury – this option scored 243.59. Both these options also include the standalone MLUs in Chipping Norton, Wantage and Wallingford. There were 10 other options considered that scored lower.

Louise Patten, chief 
executive at OCCG, said: "This process has been thorough, involving people from the local community together with experienced maternity clinicians. Together they have considered all possible options against a wide a range of different criteria. These included patient experience, choice and travel as well as clinical outcomes and workforce.

 "We have had external expertise to support this work and to ensure that all voices were heard. Everyone involved brought insight from different perspectives. Stakeholders and panel members shared their views and also listened carefully to each other. As a result, they were all prepared to persuade others of their strongly felt case, but also to compromise in an effort to seek a consensus.

"I would like to thank everyone who has given up their time to do this important work so constructively. 

"This options appraisal process is just one part of a number of pieces of work we have done to gather information about maternity services at the Horton and our local area. 
We have shared this work with local stakeholders and will also be sharing them with the Horton HOSC at the next meeting.

 OCCG will be using the options appraisal information together with the results of the survey about women's experiences of maternity services, information about expected  population growth, workforce issues and travel and transport when making final decisions later this year.

The obstetric unit at the Horton General Hospital was temporarily closed on safety grounds in October 2016 because of long term difficulties in recruiting suitably qualified doctors.

OCCG has been working with key stakeholders and Oxford University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust to respond to the recommendations by Secretary of State in relation to the closure and the future of services.


3 June 2019


23 April 2019


The survey gathering views and experience of people who have used maternity services  has now closed. Thank you to all who took the time to complete it.

The results will be published here on the OCCG website and used to support decisions being made about maternity services in Oxfordshire. 

3 April 2019

Papers for the Horton Joint Overview & Scrutiny Committee 11 April 2019

8 March 2019

We are starting to gather experience of women who have had a baby during the time the obstetric unit at the Horton General Hospital has been temporarily closed.

The survey is now open: https://livesurveys.net/nhs

If you have had a baby between 1 October 2016 and 30 September 2018 you will receive a letter inviting you to take part. You do not need to wait for your letter, please follow the link above to share your experience.

Invitation letter.

See update above (23 April) as this survey is now closed.


22 February 2019

Stakeholder Workshop 1

The first stakeholder workshop took place on 22 February 2019. 


20 February 2019

Papers for the Horton Joint Health Overview & Scrutiny Committee 25 February 2019

26 November 2018

Engagement Plan agreed with OSC

26 November 2018

Horton Joint Health Overview & Scrutiny Committee

29 September 2018

Statement from OCCG in response to Pulse article and Banbury Guardian article

28 September 2018

Horton Joint Health Overview & Scrutiny Committee 

29 March 2018

Oxfordshire Healthcare Transformation update from OCCG following IRP recommendations

8 March 2018

Statement from OCCG following IRP recommendations re: Horton Maternity Services

7 March 2018

Publication of Independent Reconfiguration Panel (IRP) advice on Horton General Hospital



Archive 2016-18

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