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Councillors approve Heatherwood Hospital plans


Frimley Health NHS Foundation Trust’s plans to build a new Heatherwood Hospital in Ascot have been approved by the Royal Borough of Windsor and Maidenhead, subject to conditions.

Councillors voted overwhelming to support the scheme at a meeting of the authority’s development management panel last night (Tuesday 22 August).

If pre-commencement conditions are agreed and met, the council’s decision will go to the Secretary of State to be ratified.

The £90m scheme would see a new elective care hospital built in woodland behind the current Heatherwood Hospital site in Ascot.

Facilities would include 40 inpatient beds and an eight-bed private patients’ suite. There would also be 22 day case spaces, outpatients and diagnostic services.

Sir Andrew Morris, chief executive of Frimley Health, said: “We have worked tirelessly with planners over the last two years and engaged with the local community in order to finalise plans to build a new hospital in Ascot fit for the 21st century.

“We appreciate all the support received at the  planning meeting and are really pleased with the outcome.

“This is great news for the trust, our patients and the staff who work hard to provide a fantastic service at Heatherwood Hospital.

“There are, however, still a few hurdles to overcome in the next few weeks and we look forward to bringing our application to a satisfactory conclusion.”

Janet King, director of HR and corporate services, said: “We are delighted that the Royal Borough has approved our plans to build a new Heatherwood Hospital, subject to conditions.

“Hopefully this decision will allow us to provide fantastic hospital services at the site for the foreseeable future.

"It was a complex application and we are grateful to the Royal Borough for its careful consideration.”

The trust hopes to start building work early next year, with the hospital opening in 2020.