Bournemouth water company pushes ahead with private hospital plan – despite builder pulling out (From Bournemouth Echo)
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Bournemouth water company pushes ahead with private hospital plan – despite builder pulling out
A WATER company is forging ahead with a planning application for a private hospital in Poole, despite the company that was to have built it pulling out.
An outline planning application for a 7,000sqm hospital on land owned by Sembcorp Bournemouth Water Ltd in Francis Avenue, Wallisdown has been approved by Borough of Poole’s planning committee.
The land is part of the Alderney Water Treatment Works site and has lain vacant for many years.
Originally Circle had proposed a 30-bed non-emergency hospital with four operating theatres and day case surgery but pulled out of the scheme earlier this year.
“We are not into hospital building generally, being a water company,” said Roger Harrington, managing director of Sembcorp Bournemouth Water.
He said the agreement with Circle foundered for “complex commercial reasons”. He said: “When the agreement fell down we didn’t want to see that money wasted, whoever spent it.”
The company decided to go ahead and seek planning permission, although he said they had no other purchaser in mind. The land is earmarked for employment use.
“We felt that the private hospital gives a use that’s not too inconsistent in the area and not too onerous in terms of the traffic and so on,” said Mr Harrington.
“The only reason we are involved at all is because it’s a piece of surplus land we happen to own. Whatever we sell it for the biggest share of it goes back to our water customers.”
The application also has to go before Bournemouth Borough Council because while the land is in Poole, the road leading to lies within Bournemouth.
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