Henley Standard Property
HOME

Date:

Order your copy Advertise with us! HENLEY PAGES
Delivering the news from Henley on Thames and South Oxfordshire for over 100 years
  News     Sport    Celebrity   What's On Regulars Community Info Henley Standard TV Lifestyle Property Jobs Classifieds Gallery Trade
                               Follow us    Follow us    Newsfeed Search the Henley Standard  
New Townlands will ‘ come good’ says NHS chief
Published 02/12/13



THE man in charge of the redevelopment of Townlands Hospital says “it will all come good”.

Harold Caldwell was speaking at a meeting of the Townlands Steering Group called following the ninth delay to the 8.7 million project.

As the Henley Standard reported two weeks ago, building work will not now start until the spring at the earliest, meaning it has now slipped back by more than three years.

Mr Caldwell is interim area manager for NHS Property Services, which is now responsible for the redevelopment.

He said NHS Property Services was committed to the project and its board was due to sign off the approved business case, probably in February or March.


“In terms of a timetable, I can’t give you a definitive date,” said Mr Caldwell. “We have said spring 2014, which depends on a lot of things, including weather. When we have the plans signed we will have time to make arrangements with developers, which could take anything from a few days to a few weeks.

“When they are on side the build is expected to take 18 months which will see the new building go up before the old one is demolished.

“We are trying to making sure we get as much documentation sorted before the Christmas break so that in the New Year we can start the final approval process.

“We appreciate we haven’t kept stakeholders involved, this group being one of many organisations with an interest.We will have monthly updates from now on so that we won’t have this unhelpful silence like in the last few months.

“To reassure the whole group, we have confidence we are close. We have one or two regular meetings a week. That’s how fast this thing is moving now.”

Former Henley mayor Dave Smewing said: “You told us in November that the finances would be met by Christmas and you have just told us February or March. I want to know which board meeting these papers are going to because financial closure has slipped by three months.

“You need to take this message back: Henley is like a nuclear reactor and we are close to critical. Henley is dangerous.”

Town councillor Ian Reissman, who chairs the steering group, said: “If it was nearly ready to be signed in June why several months on is it still several months away?

“We received assurances in the spring — were they real or did they have no meaning? How can we be certain that what you say tonight is real?

“We want to see the project succeed and we will do anything we can to make that happen but we need confidence that there’s a plan and it will succeed.”

Mr Caldwell said he understood people’s frustrations.He added: “We want your patience, understanding and communication because it will all come good and we want an enduring relationship from thereon after.”

Henley MP John Howell said he had been assured that NHS Property Services fully backed the project by James Wakeham, regional director for the South.

He said: “This is a very complex project with many elements and it’s not surprising that there are difficulties. I’ve received commitment from the regional director. I’m going to hold his feet to the fire to deliver that — as many phone calls and meetings as it takes.”

The new hospital, which was originally expected to be completed in 2011, will have 18 beds, a 64-bed care home and include the Sue Ryder hospice, which is due to move from Nettlebed in 2015.

The next meeting of the group will be on January 15. A sub-group of Peter Ashby, Mr Smewing, Cllr Reissman, Dr Wood and Mayor Stefan Gawrysiak will now meet regularly with Mr Caldwell.

Published 02/12/13

MOST POPULAR
39 and fit but nearly died from bowel cancer
Whitchurch Bridge toll to be reviewed
Romans arrive in Henley
Runners raise thousands in Marathon
Designer pops up in village
Rock stars pay tribute to Lord
Residents fight to save tree from axe
200 year-old tree removed
LATEST NEWS HEADLINES
Boys praised for entrepreneurial effort
New Thames island "claimed" by Mike Read
Could you help find Monika?
Police warn 'lock your bike'
Standard campaign behind bloom bid
Revealed: nine sites for 479 new homes
iPad mini stolen from Henley supermarket
Delight and pain of Marathon runners
Buddies replant beds spoiled by the floods
Shopkeeper prosecuted for not paying rates
Village goes quackers
New 60,000 Handibus after donation
Latest Video View more from   Henley Standard TV
ADVERTISE WITH US
LATEST SPORTS HEADLINES
Valley Road win schools tournament
Bryan bludgeons three sixes to secure honours
New-look ground opened by England bowler
Macllenan scores as side finds winning ways
Knox treble secures Madejski final date
Top Videos
 
Most Popular
 
 
 
 
Higgs Group
HIGGS GROUP
Tel: 01491 419400
www.higgsgroup.co.uk
HENLEY PAGES
Tel: 01491 419419
www.henleypages.com
HIGGS PRINTING & DESIGN
Tel: 01491 419429
www.higgsprinting.co.uk
HIGGS OFFICE SUPPLIES
Tel: 01491 419499
www.higgsofficesupplies.co.uk
HENLEY LIFE MAGAZINE
Tel: 01491 419449
www.henleylife.co.uk
HIGGS GROUP, Caxton House, 1 Station Road, Henley on Thames, Oxfordshire, RG9 1AD.

Cookie Policy | Copyright and Terms | Competition Rules | Contact Us | Advertise with us | Site Map
© Higgs & Co (Printers) Limited 2013  |  Registered in England number 1418717