Historic buildings at Grimsby's hospital could be lost to new housing plan
PLANS to sell off unused historical buildings and land at Grimsby's hospital – including the helipad – to housing developers have been revealed.
Northern Lincolnshire and Goole Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust is holding a public consultation on the plans, which include selling off the old workhouse buildings at Grimsby's Diana, Princess Of Wales Hospital, near to Scartho's clock tower.
It also wants to sell 4.2 hectares of land near Scartho Top, where the helipad is located, to make way for a potential 400 homes. The pad would be relocated, or lost altogether.
The Trust – which must make savings of £15 million a year until 2014 – will not disclose the value of the sites because it is "commercially sensitive" information, but the money made will be spent on hospital services.
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Director of facilities Nigel Myhill said: "This is something that will stop us spending money on maintaining areas we do not have a use for. It is a win-win for the community, too, because there is a need for housing out there. It is land we haven't used for years and don't have any intention of using.
"We will be looking at positioning of the helipad and whether we still need to retain it. We don't use it that much."
The old buildings include: Northside, Eastholme, Restcoates, Southolme and West Arch, which are close to the iconic clock tower and gateway.
There are also plans to sell off the buildings behind the old maternity hospital, which will be left empty when community clinic services are transferred to community centres in April.
Initial plans include retaining the buildings – including the clock tower, which is on North East Lincolnshire Council's List of Buildings of Local Architectural or Historic Interest – and working them into a new development. But demolition has not been ruled out to secure a deal.
Mr Myhill continued: "We are looking for the best option for the hospital and the community. We are not looking to make the best return at the expense of the community.
"The Trust's preferred plan is to not demolish them, but there is another option which is to knock them down. This is what the consultation will be about.
"From the Trust's point of view, it has to protect its access for blue light staff and patients, its priority is not to make a nice view into a housing estate. We are trying to make sure the hospital isn't impacted by a housing estate."
The consultation takes place on Wednesday, between 2.30pm and 7pm and on Thursday, between 9am to 11am and 2.30pm to 4.30pm, in the hospital's lecture theatre.