North Staffordshire Clinical Commissioning Group closed all 47 beds at the site in September.
But it is still used for a range of outpatient clinics.
Now the Cheadle Hospital Action Group has secured permission to have the building in Royal Walk listed after an application was approved by Staffordshire Moorlands District Council.
It comes as a controversial review into the future of North Staffordshire’s community hospitals has been delayed for three months.
NHS leaders revealed the 12-week consultation has been ‘paused’ until May 8.
The decision was blamed on the Stoke-on-Trent Central by-election and May’s Staffordshire County Council elections.
Campaigners say there are concerns about the long term future of the hospital.
One of the leaders of the action group committee is district and town councillor Peter Wilkinson.
He said: “It is a purpose-built building with a car park, which would be better suited in the community than being knocked down for houses.
“We have three GPs in the town. We could move them all into the facility and have them all under the one roof.
“We would like to see many other community projects in the building to create a community hub.
“Having it listed as a community asset is phase one complete in securing the building, but there is a lot more to do. We want to have the input of the community so that we can best serve them.
“We would like to hear from everybody and what they would like to see as we move forward.”
The status means that if the building is put up for sale, or plans are drawn up to demolish it, campaigners will be given six months to raise the funds to take it over themselves.
Another member of the group is councillor Ron Locker, who is excited at the prospect of a community hub.
He said: “From our perspective, the building needs to be given to the community and to service the community.
“We would like to see a community hub because Cheadle is one of the largest areas in the Moorlands and attracts people from other areas, and we do not have a community centre.”
The idea has attracted support from further afield as a way to preserve community hospital buildings.
Ian Syme is the co-ordinator for North Staffordshire Health Watch.
He said: “I think this is a fantastic way of keeping community buildings in the heart of the community.
“I think that there is a lot to be learnt here in places like Longton Cottage and the other community hospitals in the area.
“I would like to see the community hospitals either stay or re-open, but this is a brilliant plan B.”
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