A&E waiting times in Guildford soaring as Conservative Government pushes ahead with brutal NHS Budget Cuts

24 Jan 2024

Official figures show the number of people in Guildford waiting more than four hours in A&E has leapt by more than 150% since 2019. 

Latest figures from the House of Commons Library show nearly 30,000 people in Guildford waited more than four hours last year, compared to just over 11,500 in 2019. 

Liberal Democrat Candidate for Guildford Zöe Franklin said: 

"It is unthinkable that Rishi Sunak is now choosing to slash funding for the NHS even further, while figures like this show the appalling consequences of years of chronic under-funding from this failing Conservative Government. 

Guildford's Liberal Democrats are calling on the government to reverse its £4.7 billion of real-terms cuts to NHS funding over this year and next. 

The latest figures for the Royal Surrey Foundation NHS Trust showed: 

  • 11,694 people waited more than four hours in A&E in 2019 
  • 29,544 people waited over four hours in 2023
  • an increase of 152.6%. 

The data also revealed that the number of patients waiting more than 12 hours has soared from 4 in 2019, to 253 last year. That’s an increase of more than 6,000%. 

Across England as a whole, there were nearly 6.5 million waits of over four hours in 2023, up nearly 3 million since 2019. This comes as Liberal Democrat research revealed that the NHS budget is facing a £4.7 billion cut this year when inflation is taken into account.  

Zöe Franklin continued: 

"Every year A&E delays keep getting worse. The hard work and dedication of all staff isn’t enough to compensate for the failures of the Conservatives. We all deserve far better after years of cuts and underinvestment. 

"These appalling delays are leaving often vulnerable and elderly patients in our area waiting for hours on end in overcrowded A&Es. It isn’t just distressing for patients and staff, these callous cuts are costing lives. 

The Royal College of Emergency Medicine estimated that in England in 2022, there were more than 23,000 excess patient deaths associated with long waits. 

Ms Franklin added: "Guildford deserves so much better. The  Conservative government has shown us all that it is ignoring the suffering of patients and driving our health service into the ground. They cannot be allowed to continue. Every vote for the Liberal Democrats is a vote to fix the NHS and ensure people can access the care they need." 


Notes to Editors: 

  • House of Commons Library data can be found here
  • NHS real terms spending cuts data can be found here.
  • Data from the RCEM can be found here