Reading school could open in Royal Berkshire Hospital

Royal Berkshire Hospital
Image caption Royal Berkshire NHS Foundation Trust is looking at several options for the hospital's north block

Part of Royal Berkshire Hospital could be turned into an academy in partnership with existing secondary school Maiden Erlegh.

The secondary school would be located in the original Grade II* listed part of the hospital on London road.

Reading East MP Rob Wilson says the plan would help restore the part of the hospital built in 1839.

However, leader of Reading council Jo Lovelock raised concerns about continuity of health services.

She said there were wards still in use in the historic wing of the hospital.

'Enormous investment'

Dr Peter Thomas, the head of Maiden Erlegh, would also become head of the new academy.

He said there had been "overwhelming support" for the plan from people living in east Reading, and that a rise in the number of primary school age children meant the system would "struggle" by 2017.

The academy, for secondary school age children, could open next September if central government approved the plans.

Mr Wilson said the hospital needed "enormous investment" and was unsuitable for clinical use.

"There's subsidence in some of the buildings, the roof's leaking," he said.

Ed Donald, CEO of Royal Berkshire NHS Foundation Trust, said the trust was reviewing its plans for the next five years with a number of community groups and staff.

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