Company chosen for Bartlet sale

EXECUTIVES have chosen a company to buy Felixstowe's Bartlet Hospital - with the listed building likely to be converted into luxury flats.No details have yet been revealed as to how much the building, which is on the market for around £2 million, is being sold for nor have full details of the development proposals been released.

EXECUTIVES have chosen a company to buy Felixstowe's Bartlet Hospital - with the listed building likely to be converted into luxury flats.

No details have yet been revealed as to how much the building, which is on the market for around £2 million, is being sold for nor have full details of the development proposals been released.

The news will be a big blow to campaigners fighting to save the former convalescent unit and who want it to be kept as a home for people recovering from major operations.

The Bartlet Bequest Action Group is preparing a legal case against health secretary Patricia Hewitt, who ordered the Bartlet's closure, but must wait to see if a judge will allow it to bring the action as it is “out of time” and should have challenged sooner.


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PJ Livesey Group has been chosen as the preferred development partner, and members of the board of the Suffolk Primary Care Trust have been asked to endorse the decision at their meeting on Wednesday.

In a report to the board, Mark Crawley, Felixstowe project leader and chairman of the evaluation group which analysed the bids, said eight different companies were shown around the building on Bath Hill after 150 brochures were sent out to interested firms.

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He said: “Given the site's use there was a considerable amount of interest from nursing home operators.

“However these initial inquiries have not resulted in further expressions of interest.”

It was felt this was because of the small size of the main hospital building, its unsuitable layout, the inability to extend the main site because there is no adjoining land, and restrictions because of the architecture and the grade two listed status.

Mr Crawley said: “It would appear that all of these factors have contributed to the conclusion that this would be an extremely expensive site to develop as a nursing home. Consequently, no credible proposals of this nature have been received.”

The main interest was from developers wanting to convert the hospital to homes and three had been short-listed and scrutinised and PJ Livesey Group chosen.

Detailed plans would have to be developed before the sale was completed.

Do you think the Bartlet should be converted into homes? Write to Your Letters, Evening Star, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich, IP4 1AN, or e-mail EveningStarLetters@eveningstar.co.uk.

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