News

Planning consent secured for former hospital site in Hornchurch

by Freja Cooper

NHS Property Services has successfully secured planning consent on appeal for 290 much needed new homes on the former St George’s hospital site in Hornchurch. The consent includes the provision of 15% affordable housing.

The site has been declared surplus and is no longer being used for health services. NHS Property Services is in the process of disposing of the property in order to generate valuable funds to reinvest in the NHS.

A 1.6-hectare portion of the 11.7-hectare site is being kept for a new, 3,000 sqm health facility.

The Planning Inspectorate’s appeal decision, published last week, comes after site owner NHS Property Services agreed amendments with the council for the outline scheme.

John Westwood, Director of Asset Management at NHS Property Services, said:

“We welcome this decision, which clearly demonstrates how we can help the NHS by using our expertise to unlock development potential and achieve best value for surplus sites.”

Marketing will now begin to secure a purchaser for the site. Savills has been appointed to handle the sale, with all proceeds going back to the NHS for reinvestment in new facilities.

The site has been vacant since clinical services moved out in October 2012 and was declared surplus to NHS requirements by Havering Clinical Commissioning Group.

The outline permission is for 204 new-build homes and 86 conversion units, 15% of which will be affordable. Indicative plans show a development of houses ranging from two to five bedrooms and one-to-three-bedroom flats, as well as parking, landscape and infrastructure works.

Senior Transaction Manager, Dan Hotson added:

“In addition to generating capital for the NHS, this development will help meet the Government’s targets for releasing public sector land for much-needed new homes in London, including affordable housing and the potential for key worker housing. We expect strong interest in this property.”

The brownfield site is located in the green belt and is identified as a Major Development Site in the adopted development plan. The Planning Inspector concluded that the proposal would not result in a greater impact on the green belt than the existing development and would not amount to inappropriate development.

In March, the Government published the Naylor Review into NHS property and estates, which estimated that the NHS could release estate valued at a risk-adjusted figure of £2.7bn, adding: “…this estimate could rise significantly if the NHS adopts a more commercial approach to obtaining planning consent, negotiating affordable housing quotas and maximising value from the highest value sites in London.”

The property is being marketed by Savills – call Nick Walker on 01245 293250 or email ndwalker@savills.com or click on www.savills.co.uk/stgeorges for details.

Steve Walters of SW Planning (www.swplanning.co.uk) advised NHS Property Services.