BREAKING NEWS New Berwick hospital to be built at Berwick Academy
BREAKING NEWS New Berwick hospital to be built at Berwick Academy

A 25hectare site at the end of Berwick Academy playing fields has been named as the preferred location for Berwicks new multimillionpound hospital

A draft agreement has been prepared between Northumbria Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust and Berwick Academy to buy a 25hectare site at the southern end of the academys playing fields for the development The agreement is subject to approval from the secretary of state for education

The agreement has been reached with the intention of benefitting the whole community by enabling a new hospital to be built and sporting facilities at the academy to be enhanced It would allow the current services at Berwick Infirmary to be provided in purposebuilt modern facilities

Once given the green light the Trust will reposition the two football pitches currently on the site and fund significant improvements to them ensuring they meet Sport England specifications It will also refurbish six tennis courts to enable the academy to have a high quality facility for use by pupils and the community

The Trust is planning to rebuild Berwick Infirmary as part of its pound200m investment to significantly improve healthcare in Northumberland and North Tyneside over the next 10 years

Brian Griggs director of capital planning and development at Northumbria Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust said We are delighted to be able to work in partnership with Berwick Academy to secure a preferred site for a new hospital which will significantly improve healthcare for people in the area

We are fully committed to delivering a new hospital and the development is a key part of our pound200million investment This is a significant step forward for the development and excellent news for people in Berwick and surrounding areas

Stephen Quinlan headteacher of Berwick Academy said We are extremely pleased to be able to support Northumbria Healthcare in its desire to provide a new hospital for Berwick and this is great news for the community the academy and the Trust

This is a fine example of two public bodies working together for the greater good of the community

The improvements to our sports facilities will make a significant difference to our students and help to keep them fit and healthy

We are confident that there is ample suitable space on the remaining 34 acres for the maintenance of our superb sporting and athletic facilities and we will work with Sport England in conjunction with the Trust to ensure that the highest possible standards are achieved

The Trust ran a series of roadshows towards the end of 2009 to find out peoples views about health services in Berwick and a new hospital for the town Residents were overwhelmingly in favour of a new hospital with 96 per cent wanting a modern new facility

Dr Richard Curless director of medicine and emergency care at the Trust said People in Berwick and the surrounding areas told us they wanted a new hospital when we spoke to residents a couple of years ago

People had differing views about where the best place for the development would be Respondents however agreed it should be in a convenient location near to the A1 that is accessible by public transport and would allow for improved parking

Locating the hospital on the academy site allows us to meet these requirements whilst also benefiting the academy

A new committee has been set up to help drive forward the planning and delivery of a new hospital for Berwick

Date : 09 May, 2012
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