A HOSPITAL takeover bid by a top Northumbrian health trust would likely have resulted in the closure of Whitehaven’s consultant-led maternity unit, it has been claimed.

Dr David Rogers, medical director of NHS North Cumbria Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG), made the revelation during a key meeting about the future of maternity services.

The acquisition bid dates back to 2012, when the Carlisle and Whitehaven hospitals were struggling.

Northumbria Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust were expected to take over North Cumbria University Hospitals NHS Trust, but the deal fell through.

Had it happened, Dr Rogers said the service - which has now been saved - would likely have been centralised in Carlisle.

He told the meeting in Cleator Moor: “Northumbria were not supportive of having two consultant-led units. The CCG has always been supportive, providing it is safe to do so.”