New Hospitals

Oral Answers to Questions — Hospitals – in the House of Commons at 12:00 am on 13th April 1959.

Alert me about debates like this

Photo of Mr Frank Hayman Mr Frank Hayman , Falmouth and Camborne 12:00 am, 13th April 1959

asked the Minister of Health what new hospitals have been built in England and Wales since 1951; and what was the cost of each.

Photo of Mr Derek Walker-Smith Mr Derek Walker-Smith , Hertfordshire East

No new hospital has been completed in its final form. Five are partly completed and in use, but as there are to be later stages the final cost is not yet known; and work has started on nine others.

Photo of Mr Frank Hayman Mr Frank Hayman , Falmouth and Camborne

asked the Minister of Health when he expects work to commence on the building of the proposed district hospital for St. Austell, Cornwall; and how much will be spent on building in the current financial year.

Photo of Mr Richard Thompson Mr Richard Thompson , Croydon South

My right hon. and learned Friend is awaiting revised sketch plans of the maternity unit and I cannot say at this stage when the building work will start.

Photo of Mr Frank Hayman Mr Frank Hayman , Falmouth and Camborne

Can the hon. Gentleman inform the House when he expects the sketch plans to be finally approved?

Photo of Mr Richard Thompson Mr Richard Thompson , Croydon South

Not with precision, but we are pressing on as fast as possible.

Photo of Commander Sir Douglas Marshall Commander Sir Douglas Marshall , Bodmin

Can my hon. Friend assure the House that the delay is in no way concerned with financial disagreements between the Ministry of Health and the local authority which is dealing with the hospital?

Photo of Mr Richard Thompson Mr Richard Thompson , Croydon South

Yes, Sir. The difficulties here are not primarily financial but are related to the difficulties of the site, with which my hon. Friend is already familiar.

Photo of Mr Frank Hayman Mr Frank Hayman , Falmouth and Camborne

asked the Minister of Health when he expects work to commence on the building of the first phase of the new area hospital for Cornwall; and how much will be spent on building in the current financial year.

Photo of Mr Richard Thompson Mr Richard Thompson , Croydon South

A considerable measure of agreement has now been reached on the sketch plans of the first phase of the new area hospital at Truro, but I cannot say at present when building work is likely to start.

Photo of Mr Frank Hayman Mr Frank Hayman , Falmouth and Camborne

Can the Parliamentary Secretary tell the hospital management committee whether it should consult an astrologer, since this building has been in project for about eight or nine years?

Photo of Mr Richard Thompson Mr Richard Thompson , Croydon South

It has been "cooking" for some time, but the effective timetable dates from 1955, when the project was one of those announced by my right hon. Friend the present Minister of Labour. It may help the hon. Gentleman if I say that a meeting with the board and the hospital management committee took place in February, when a considerable measure of agreement was reached and when a number of points were left to the board to consider in the preparation of what, it is hoped, will be the final sketch plan. Perhaps we can dispense with the astrologer on that.

Photo of Mr Frank Hayman Mr Frank Hayman , Falmouth and Camborne

I hope that it is the final stage of the sketch plan.

Photo of Mr Richard Thompson Mr Richard Thompson , Croydon South

I can assure the hon. Member that that is our hope.

Photo of Dr Edith Summerskill Dr Edith Summerskill , Warrington

As the House has heard my hon. Friend putting a similar Question frequently over the last few years and has heard the hon. Gentleman make precisely the same Answer, why can the hon. Gentleman not tell the House exactly what is wrong in this part of Cornwall and why it has taken all these years to get through the preliminary phase of getting this hospital?

Photo of Mr Richard Thompson Mr Richard Thompson , Croydon South

The hon. Member for Falmouth and Camborne (Mr. Hayman) may resent the suggestion that anything is wrong in this part of Cornwall. However, there have been exceptional difficulties with the phasing of this major scheme. It is that which has engaged the attention of the authorities concerned, but I assure the hon. Lady that we are doing our utmost to give early approval.