New £25m hospital to replace Berwick Infirmary

Image source, Northumbria Healthcare Trust
Image caption,
An artist's impression of what the new Berwick Infirmary entrance will look like

Plans for a £25m hospital to replace a 19th Century infirmary in Northumberland have been approved.

Northumbria Healthcare Trust said 295 jobs would be created during the building of the new Berwick Infirmary.

The trust had originally planned to build a new hospital and leisure centre at a different site but scrapped the move after public opposition.

Northumberland County Council's planning committee gave the go-ahead for the hospital, due to open in 2022.

The health trust said the new hospital would offer all the services of the current one, which would continue to operate during construction work.

While the old hospital was being demolished, departments would be moved within the infirmary with patient appointments taking place in alternative locations at the site, the trust added.

Image source, Northumbria Healthcare Trust
Image caption,
The old infirmary was built in 1874

Trust chief executive Sir James Mackey said the old building was no longer "suitable" for a modern hospital.

"For too long, residents have needed a new hospital which is fit to deliver 21st Century healthcare and equipped to embrace the latest technology to further improve the care they receive," he said.

As well as delivering current services in a modern building, the new facility would also have an endoscopy suite to "deliver care closer to people's homes", he added.

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