VETERAN football manager and local hero Harry Redknapp has officially opened a new MRI and CT Centre at The Harbour Hospital in Poole.

The former AFC Bournemouth manager, now boss of London side Queen’s Park Rangers, said he was delighted to open the “wonderful” new facility, which cost more than £2 million.

“The technology is very impressive,” he said. “It gives me great pleasure to join the fantastic team here to get this new and vitally important service up and running.

“I live in the area and I have friends at this hospital, I have been here quite a few occasions myself.

“I remember using the old mobile units but to see the new machines go in is fantastic.

“Illness can affect anybody at any time so it is great to have this kind of facility available on our doorstep.”

The BMI Harbour Alliance MRI and CT Centre, housed in the former Old Nursery on St Mary’s Road, will allow patients to access scans more readily, and the state-of-the-art open-bore Siemens MRI scanner – which weighs as much as a double-decker bus – will make scans a more comfortable and quick experience.

It also allows the hospital imaging team to obtain enhanced cardiac scans.

Consultant radiologist Dr Alistair Thomson said: “It really is a welcome and significant investment.

“Both the MRI and CT scanners will enhance the diagnostic imaging services provided by the hospital, offering patients rapid access to scanning and providing high-quality images.”

The imaging department will be managed by Alliance Medical in partnership with the hospital.

Hospital chief executive Dan Stonell said: “We’re incredibly pleased that Harry Redknapp could find the time in his busy schedule, especially mid-season, to join us and help launch our fantastic new facility.

“We would all like to wish him and QPR all the best for the rest of the 2013/14 campaign.”