FUNDING of £800m has been awarded to build Basingstoke’s new hospital. 

It was announced in 2020 that Basingstoke would be given a new hospital as part of a £3.7 billion government funding package, but earlier this year plans were put into doubt because of fears over insufficient funding and rising costs.

On Thursday, May 25, health secretary Steve Barclay reconfirmed the Government's commitment for new hospitals across the country. 

Hampshire Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust has been awarded £800m to build a new hospital for mid and north Hampshire.

The largest infrastructure investment in Basingstoke’s history is currently two years behind a published scheduled timeline, and a public consultation due to take place in January 2021 to help decide between two shortlisted locations has still not been held.

The two potential sites are land off Junction 7 of the M3 or the current site of Basingstoke hospital, but it appears that the Junction 7 site is the preferred site following discussions in Parliament. 

The trust previously said that the project “remains on course” to be delivered by 2030, but Basingstoke's MP Dame Maria Miller said that the hospital is now likely to be completed by 2032-33. 

She said: "We have a plan, we have a preferred site, we have an amazing team on the ground, so how can my right honourable friend work with me and other colleagues to speed up this new hospital, it is badly needed to replace the current hospital which was built in the 1970s to last 50 years. We have one of the biggest backlogs of maintenance, we need that new hospital to really meet the needs of our growing population, we have some of the highest levels of housebuilding in the south east. What can he do to help?"

Mr Barclay responded that he will continue talks with Dame Maria, but said: "There are some questions which we are keen to work through, not least around junction 7, the land acquisition and some of the service design."

READ MORE: LIVE: Reaction as major funding announced for new hospital in Basingstoke

Hampshire Together, the hospital trust, Basingstoke and Deane Borough Council, Hampshire County Council, and others have continued to work on the project.

The build will not just include a new hospital, but will bring together different aspects of the health and care systems, allowing even greater integration of primary care, mental health teams and social care teams across the town.   

The current hospital, built in the 1970s, is said to be coming to the end of its life, with maintenance costs steadily increasing, and a backlog of repairs currently standing at £178m.

Dame Maria told the Gazette: “Hampshire Hospital Trust has secured £800 million from the Government to fund our new hospital which is the largest infrastructure investment in Basingstoke’s history and the result of an extraordinary piece of teamwork led by the trust’s chief executive Alex Whitfield. We now move onto the next stage with the team on the ground being able to launch a public consultation, secure the preferred site, and then apply for detailed planning consent. 

 “It is only right that the Treasury and the NHS have a process of rigorous scrutiny to ensure public money is well spent. Whilst the NHS has been focussed on keeping us all safe through the pandemic and tackling the backlog of medical treatment, our trust has also continued to work hard to get its detailed business plan through the extensive NHS approval process and successfully approved by the Treasury. 

“I know that residents across Basingstoke are looking forward to this process moving forward as quickly as possible. This is a huge step forward, allowing our local NHS to replace a much-loved 1970s hospital with a state-of-the-art new facility fit to serve the residents of Basingstoke, north and mid Hampshire.’’