West Dorset MP Chris Loder has hit back at claims that successive Conservative governments' lack of investment in the NHS has left hospitals in a ‘perilous’ state.

As previously reported, Liberal Democrat Parliamentary candidate Edward Morello made the claim, calling for more investment in the NHS.

It came as it was revealed DCH needs more than £11 million to get through its repairs backlog.

Mr Loder hit back - and said that he had helped to secure a huge amount of investment for the Dorchester hospital.

It was originally reported by the Echo that at the time of Mr Morello's comments, Mr Loder had yet to respond and had been contacted for a comment.

However, this was not correct as Mr Loder was not approached by the Echo. Mr Loder has since responded.

He said: “I know that DCH has areas that need improvement. But, when I was first elected, I secured £62m for investment in DCH from a Conservative government.

“A new car park has been built, the A&E has been re-furbished and the extension, including the old Damers School site is well underway.

“I have continued to secure more investment in DCH too. Only a month ago, I met with the estates director in Dorchester who shared a very good progress report – and all you need to do is walk by to see that the hospital has one of its most significant investment projects in its history - happening right now."

He added: “I am not aware that the local Lib Dem candidate has urged the government to do anything directly."