Five-year-old Jacob Bradbury has delivered the Stoke Sentinel’s petition for a new hospital to 10 Downing Street.
The youngster travelled with editor Sean Dooley to hand in the petition, which has been signed by 19,138 people.
The event marks the culmination of the paper’s efforts to put pressure on the Government to build a new hospital in North Staffordshire.
The Government has cash to create 18 new hospitals but 24 areas have submitted applications.
The Sentinel claimed that Stoke should be an automatic choice and ran a series of features to promote this.
As part of the trip to London, bound copies of the features were delivered to Downing Street and the Department of Health headquarters.
Sean Dooley said: “To have received almost 20,000 signatures in such a short time speaks volumes for the strong view from this area that the hospital is essential to the development of future health services.
“I give my personal thanks to all those who have supported the campaign.
Civil servant Paul Macnaught, who took delivery of the petition, said: “A petition signed by 19,000 people is certainly impressive and something that must be reckoned with.
“But I have to say there are other considerations that must be taken into account before a decision is made.”
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