New hospital for Harlow residents may now not open until 2032

Health / Wed 8th May 2024 at 06:20am

PRINCESS Alexandra Hospital Trust (PAHT) bosses have admitted that a new hospital for Harlow residents may now not be ready until 2032.

They are set to be questioned by councillors on the Essex County Council Health Overview Policy and Scrutiny Committee.

Plus there was more bad news as the man in charge of the project revealed that they still haven’t bought the land.

Harlow residents could be forgiven for wondering if the site, which they hope to build near to Junction 7a of the M11 will ever be built?

Michael Meredith, Director of Strategy PAHT makes the following points in his report.

The New Hospital Programme (NHP) has submitted their Programme Business case to the Investment Committee. This case contains all the proposed new hospitals that form the programme.

Our understanding is that this will be approved at the end of May at which time we are expecting that the new hospital in Harlow will be able to proceed to the next stage.

Unfortunately, as at our previous updates to meetings of the HOSC, PAHT delays and uncertainty within the New Hospital Programme at a national level is leading to delays with the delivery of the new hospital.

We are currently finalising the appointment of the team of consultants to support this important work in readiness for an announcement from NHS England.

We continue to negotiate with the landowner at Junction 7a of the M11 to purchase a site for the new hospital, however, this is proving challenging to conclude.

At present it is not possible to give a firmer indication of the timeline for the opening of the new hospital. PAHT is continuing to work in line with the Government’s commitment to have all current New Hospital Programme schemes operational by 2030, however, realistically we believe that 2032 is
more achievable.

We received a small amount of development funding which facilitates the land negotiation and the ability to continue refinement of the new models of care.

The timeline to submit a planning application is both dependant on the volume of changes required to our own designs to meet the requirements of Hospital 2.0 and the acquisition of a site. Therefore, based on what is currently understood it is likely that a planning application will be made in 2025.

The report will be presented at 10.30 am on Wednesday May 8th at Essex County Council.

We hope to have a further report.

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24 Comments for New hospital for Harlow residents may now not open until 2032:

2024-05-08 08:03:00

I'll be dead by then! What a shocker, Conservatives not keeping their promise.

Nicholas Taylor
2024-05-08 08:15:41

I was at the board meeting of PAH some four years ago when they decided to go with their preferred option, that is to move to a field near junction 7a. I believe this was a fundamental error of judgement, moving from a site they already own, with all services in place and a site which will remain at the centre of the hospitals catchment area when thousands of homes are built in and around Harlow. The fact is a new PAH is on a list of 14 new hospital projects across the country, the cost of which has more than doubled at a time when basically the countries finances are bust. In the meantime millions of pounds are being spent on facilities on the current site. It must surely be time to bite the bullet and start work on designing the buildings which need replacing on the present site. PS One of the many hollow election pledges made by the "Local Conservatives", which of course has nothing to do with the Council.

Kim Oconnor
2024-05-08 08:18:34

Amazing this information comes out after local elections... But don't think there's any surprises here.. just broken promises as usual..

Tony Edwards
2024-05-08 08:19:06

Perhaps Cllr Souter who sits on this Committee could give Your Harlow a report detailing the reason for the broken promises and delays How convenient for him that this information has been published after the District Council Elections!

Peter Henegan
2024-05-08 08:22:02

Is anyone reading this really surprised? I wonder, could they have made this announcement before the local elections, was there political intervention to delay it? I would also hazard a guess that, with the advancement of medical science, the type of hospital/care required will change substantially.

David Forman
2024-05-08 09:30:44

Don't worry folks, the next Labour government has promised to.outsource a lot of NHS services to the private sector.. Under Labour the new hospital will be the Ramsay Care Rivers Hospital at Sawbridgeworth.

2024-05-08 09:39:08

It didn't take long for Mr Swords' election promises to unravel. While we're on the topic, do you remember Mr Swords promising to lie down in front of the bulldozers wearing a batman suit to stop houses being built on the field of Purford Green school? He didn't do it did he. Has the rebuilding of the town centre, promised on day one after the election, started 5 days after the election? When are we getting the new Marks and Spencers that Mr Swords promised? And what about his pledge to knock down Terminus House, something the owners and managers of terminus House knew nothing about?

2024-05-08 10:15:57

Promise anything,get out of it later.How can anyone believe a word they say?I got 5 election leaflets from them.Straight in the rubbish bin.(didn't even look recyclable)

Nogin the nog
2024-05-08 10:27:12

Very disappointing we need new hospital ASP mr halphon promised it and his mate boris what a let down no wonder he is not standing again

Tony Edwards
2024-05-08 10:41:25

Perhaps, Cllr Souter and his Conservative colleagues can explain why there was no elected representative from Harlow present at today's Essex Health Overview Policy and Scrutiny Committee meeting where the new hospital programme and the Harlow hospital was being discussed!

View from Afar
2024-05-08 11:05:29

Any still no resolution regarding Cllr Leppard -.Tory leader hopes for decision “within days” - Your Harlow Saturday 4th May Swept under the carpet I guess

Gary Roberts
2024-05-08 11:45:10

Is anyone surprised at this article. And let me concur with many on this blog that Harlow will not be getting a new hospital even in 2032. The Conservatives have already reneaged on so many pledges. If the local electorate already knew this why didn't Labour win in this town? I would guess.......

Tony Wiseman
2024-05-08 12:43:21

Trace, please don't die! Your whit and political insight would be sorely missed.

Guy Flegman
2024-05-08 12:47:57

The rivers hospital is already doing nhs work. The new proposed site does not have any services(gas,electric,water etc). The cost to get services to the site will be a substantial percentage of the cost. Don’t even mention the valley location that regularly floods.

2024-05-08 13:13:59

David Foreman - I’m no Labour supporter, but I feel I must correct you. The next Labour Government has promised to use the private sector to clear up some of the mess left by Covid and the various iterations of this Conservative government. They are just being pragmatic – The longer you leave someone ill, the more ill they become – That is something which Sunak doesn’t seem able to grasp. The Tories also seem to think you can grow the economy just by increasing immigration – If you have people who are ill and you can get them back into work, then that is a far better way to grow the economy and turn this country around. Give me the Rivers Hospital at Sawbridgeworth under Labour any day over a Tory promise of a hospital.

2024-05-08 13:16:19

Scandalous. I appreciate that Headline refers to Harlow residents....etc. But this delay also affects huge number of residents in East Herts and the Epping Forest District. In fact, if the land , as proposed is finally purchased then the new Hospital will actually be within the EFDC boundaries and so it will be them (and not Harlow Council) who will receive approx £3 million each year in Rates. (its not surprising that most people don't realise that Hospitals pay Local Council Authorities huge amounts in Rates)

2024-05-08 13:55:30

If you go back through old news stories from 2019 when Boris bragged about opening new hospitals, this was supposed to open in 2024. It's five years later but the deadline has slipped to EIGHT years from now. Somehow they've made zero progress and added three years to the project. There's incompetence and then there's this Conservative government. They're so spectacular incompetent we need to invent a new word for it.

2024-05-08 13:57:55

There needs to be a new hospital at the proposed new location and investment in the existing Hospital. There are too many people in the area depending on one hospital. it's utter madness. All the tories seem to do is talk the talk but don't actually do anything. In fact I'm really surprised they haven't demolished PAH already as that's their idea of regeneration. Sadly I do agree that this news is absolutely no surprise to anyone. Along with PHE, this has always been a pie in the sky vote grabber

2024-05-08 15:29:45

Surely you should know by now that Dan Dan the bulldozer man just knocks things down. Terminus house still looks pretty solid so far even though it was supposed to be going within days of winning the election, so maybe he's stopped demolishing things now as well.

2024-05-08 16:35:46

Coincidence that this news broke after the election? I hope at the general election people remember just how conniving the Tory party are!!

Ross Young
2024-05-08 21:04:58

Boris Johnson’s ‘oven-ready’ Brexit deal, his ‘shovel ready’ hospital for Harlow and his ‘world beating’ everything else. It’s not happening is it! - PAH, you need to stand down your ‘Director of Strategy’, your Project Teams and your Design Teams etc.etc. Stop wasting OUR money on this fantasy and focus on what should be your focus - Improving your poor patient outcomes.

Harlow resident
2024-05-08 23:13:28

Harlow hospital has spent countless thousands on propaganda about the new hospital all over the PAH. Site. Harlow hospital 2025.... Harlow hospital 2017....Harlow hospital 2029. Now 2032...What a load of crap spoken by Boris johson for his 2019 election manifesto. / no hospital has been built/ we still ain't got the 20k new police either. The biggest ball grinder in political history...

Gilston resident
2024-05-09 07:13:45

How interesting and yet in no way surprising. PAH accommodates not only Harlow residents but that of Loughton, Epping, Waltham Abbey, Nazeing, Roydon, Gilston, High Wych, Sawbridgeworth amongst others. It’s no rocket science to see how over populated Harliw Town has become and if it were possible to get the correct up-to-date figures for the population of the above mentioned places you can see why the existing hospital is unable to cope. There are continual problems within PAH in terms of its buildings, drainage, asbestos and more.and yet the new Harlow/Gilston development of 10:000 places was agreed and building work soon to start but no new hospital in sight. God help anyone who decides to buy the properties when our care facilities are at an all time low and barely exist. I have no faith in anything I read/hear anymore, facilities around us are falling apart and yet all costs are rising. The governments are corrupt and so are those involved in the decision making who are lining their own pockets. As for us the mere mortals it seems to be a case of shut up & put up!!

Jennifer Steadman
2024-05-09 07:19:19

The Harlow Greens invited Michael Meredith to a meeting last year and he advised us then that the the plot hadnt been decided, infact there was a choice of three different plots being considered also the build plans hadnt been approved at that time. Various start dates were advised to us which felt a little too hopeful considering the amount of planning work still to be undertaken. So sadly, this news isnt a total surprise.

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