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Felixstowe: Bartlet Hospital sells for twice as much as expected

PUBLISHED: 11:30 14 January 2013 | UPDATED: 13:35 14 January 2013

Peter Blemings, director of Gipping Homes, which has bought the former Bartlet Hospital at Felixstowe to convert into luxury homes.

Peter Blemings, director of Gipping Homes, which has bought the former Bartlet Hospital at Felixstowe to convert into luxury homes.

Archant

HEALTH officials have received £1.16million from the sale of Felixstowe’s redundant Bartlet Hospital – and there could be more cash to come.

NHS Suffolk have put a clause in the contract which entitles the health authorities to receive a portion of the income if consent is obtained for any significant further development on the site.

The purchase price is nearly twice the £600,000 initial asking price.

Gipping Homes today confirmed completion of their purchase of the former convalescent hospital on Bath Hill, Felixstowe.

The award-winning homes company, which is based at Baylham, near Ipswich, will convert the Grade II-starred building into 21 luxury flats, turn the old nurses’ home into seven properties and build three new town houses in a terrace in the grounds.

Site clearance work has already started, along with increased security measures, essential repairs and maintenance works, which will continue while approval is sought from Suffolk Coastal for improvements to the existing consent.

Peter Blemings, a director of Gipping Homes, said the company was delighted to secure such an iconic building which has played an important role in the history of Felixstowe.

“Because of our considerable experience in the delivery and operation of care homes we did look at the site, some years ago, to see if it was feasible to retain its existing use,” he said.

“But it became apparent that the layout was not suitable for redevelopment to provide facilities in line with current expectations, some 90 years on from when the hospital was originally built, especially in view of the need to limit the extent of refurbishment works due to the building’s protected status.

“Those of us who have seen relatives benefit from convalescing at The Bartlet over the years clearly lament the loss of this facility but over three generations on, more appropriate care facilities are available throughout the county offering similar services to those provided as a result of the vision of Dr Bartlet, back in the 1920s.”

It is hoped that works will start in earnest before the summer and with the first properties becoming available in 2014.

4 comments

  • I hope Gipping homes and anyone who purchases the properties they develop have good lawyers to defend against claims that they do no own the freehold as this building was given to the people of Felixstowe not the NHS

    Report this comment

    A Smith

    Monday, January 14, 2013

  • It makes one wonder, yet again, why the NHS should receive the money from this sale, and to what use the money will be put. Can the people of Felixstowe insist that the money is hypothecated to the benefit of us all, instead of, presumably, being swallowed up into NHS "general expenditure"?

    Report this comment

    cwayconslt

    Tuesday, January 15, 2013

  • The use of the money is a fair point that people make here as the property was donated to the town and not the NHS. Conversely though, the NHS has been responsible for maintaining the property whilst it was in service. Wouldn’t it be fantastic if a token amount (lets say £500,000) was handed back to the town and used for the good of all – perhaps to keep the Spa running for a couple of years whilst a final, last ditched, attempted to find a buyer is found. Let the legacy left behind go on to help people in other ways. Perhaps Richard Cornwall, Felixstowe Editor, could do a follow up story along the lines of “where has the money gone”.

    Report this comment

    Homeofstowe

    Tuesday, January 15, 2013

  • Perhaps Gipping Homes would like to buy the Spa.

    Report this comment

    biggles the pilot

    Monday, January 14, 2013

The views expressed in the above comments do not necessarily reflect the views of this site

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