Northumberland contractor appointed to build new £30million Berwick hospital

A brand new £30million hospital for Berwick has now moved a step closer as a contractor has been appointed.

Wednesday, 10th February 2021, 2:23 pm
Updated Wednesday, 10th February 2021, 2:23 pm
A visual of how the main entrance to the new Berwick hospital will look.

Northumbria Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust has awarded the contract to Cramlington-based construction company, Merit.

In addition, further funding has now been made available to ensure this building is fit for the future of health care and also incorporating inflationary costs while reaching this point.

Sir James Mackey, chief executive of Northumbria Healthcare, said: “As an experienced and well-established construction specialist, with a varied and impressive portfolio, I can assure the people of Berwick that we are confident that Merit will deliver a state-of-the-art hospital. It is fantastic that they are a local company.

“For too long, residents have needed a new hospital which is fit to deliver 21st century health care, now and for future generations, and is equipped to embrace the latest technology to provide our patients with the highest quality of care.

“In these uncertain and difficult times, this is an extremely welcome innovative development, which will also generate 300 jobs per year during construction and support the local economy.”

Work to enable the demolition of vacant parts of the current hospital is to begin this month and will enable the construction of the new development on the northern end of the site to begin in the summer.

Merit managing director, Tony Wells, said: “We are delighted to be working with Northumbria Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust to deliver Berwick’s new hospital.

“A large part of the construction work will be undertaken offsite in the Merit factory in Cramlington. The use of offsite manufacture means that Merit can control the quality, significantly improve the programme and minimise disruption to those who live and work in Berwick.”

Northumbria Healthcare’s executive director for nursing and midwifery, Marion Dickson, who is leading the project for the trust, said: “While our staff at Berwick do an amazing job and provide the highest quality of care for our patients, they are constrained by the poor physical condition and functionality of the building which is, in parts, nearly 150 years old.

“Having a purpose-built hospital will make a massive difference to them and ensure an improved experience for our patients.”

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