£199m Investment Programme For Springfield Hospital

32 acre public park, housing plus two new mental health inpatient facilities in plans

Springfield Hospital now......................................... and the new planned health units

The first new public park since the Olympics is set to arrive in Tooting, South London, in the next couple of years, as part of the new development at Springfield Hospital.

The 32-acre park will include a pavilion and cafe, two children’s playgrounds, a “trim trail” with fitness equipment, and more than 400 new trees.

There will also be large grassed areas for rugby, cricket and football teams to play, as well as a rose garden at the southern edge of the park.

The hospital site is undergoing a £199m programme, which will see two new mental health inpatient facilities built, set to open in 2022.

artists impression of a new Mental Health Unit

These include eight new inpatient wards and the modernisation of the Trust’s community services, amounting to £150m.

The hospital first opened as the Surrey County Pauper Lunatic Asylum in 1841, as one of the few facilities available for people who suffered from mental illness.

However, many of the buildings are now old and outdated.

The hospital will fund new inpatient buildings by disposing of those parts of the site no longer needed for healthcare.

The Grade II listed building will be redeveloped into housing, while other plots on the estate will be sold for other community facilities within the site.

There will be more than 830 new homes, shops, offices, and even land for a new school.

The first 26 homes were completed in Spring 2018.

The development will also see a £49m investment in new infrastructure for the site, after concerns it was too remote and difficult to access.

This includes the creation of new road, landscaping, power, lighting, utilities, an underground car park, paving and signage.

The project will be paid for by sales of hospital land, the wider estate and internally generated resources.

Land and estate sales have already been made, generating £122m, not including fees and tax.

Another £37m will be made from further resources, land, and estate sales.

The project was given the go-ahead this month after the Department of Health and Social Care agreed to a loan.

This includes an initial bridging loan of £49m between now and 2026, that will be paid off by the coming land and estate sales.

A further £40m will been taken out as part of a medium term loan, and paid back from 2026 over approximately seven years.

The hospital say the savings generated through the reduced costs of maintaining the new buildings will be used to pay the second part of the loan.

The hospital insists it will not impact on patient care, because none of the money that is designated for patient care will be used to repay the loan.

The CQC rated the trust as ‘Good’ in December 2019.

They noted improvements in acutre inpatient and secure wards.

However, they emphasised more work still needs to be done in the specialist eating disorders service, particularly for children and young people.

Sian Bayley - Local Democracy Reporter

January 28, 2020