Plans to improve local GP services have taken a step forward.

Arun District Council has approved plans in principle to convert part of a building in Courtwick Lane, Littlehampton, into a GP surgery.

Arun Medical Group, which has branches in East Street and in the nearby village of East Preston, is aiming to move into the new site.

Arun Medical Group GP Jill Adams said: “This is the first and crucial step in the long process towards us relocating sometime early 2016.

“We are excited at the prospect of improved parking, disabled access and the capacity to improve the delivery of healthcare to our patients.”

A spokesman for NHS Coastal West Sussex Clinical Commissioning Group said: “It has been a significant priority for the local NHS to look at how we could improve local health services in the wider Littlehampton area.

“Arun Medical Group has been looking for alternative premises for some time, and with all of the housing planned for the north of the town, there has also been an urgent need to address the fact that there isn’t a GP practice in this area.

"This relocation presents a unique opportunity for Arun Medical Group to grow as a practice and develop not only what it can provide to its current patients, but also to the new residents moving to that area of town.”