Funding approved for Laing O’Rourke hospital scheme

Plans for the revamp of Whitehaven’s West Cumberland Hospital are set to go ahead after finally receiving approval for funding.

Chancellor George Osborne made an announcement in October 2010 that assured the governments backing for the project. However, since then work has been on hold while awaiting final approval from the Treasury.

It has been confirmed that £71.6m of funding will come from the government while the remaining £20m will come from North Cumbria University Hospital NHS Trust and the North of England Strategic Health Authority.

Funding for the project still remains conditional to the final contract being signed by the preferred bidder Laing O’Rourke within three months.

The development will include the construction of a new accident and emergency unit, new wards, increasing the size of single rooms and the refurbishment of the women and children’s unit.

Interim chief executive of North Cumbria University Hospitals Trust, Dr Neil Goodwin, said: “This is excellent news for West Cumbria and we are delighted that the most significant part of the funding for the hospital redevelopment has today been approved by HM Treasury.”

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