Developer interested in Bartlet

felixstowe: Health bosses have confirmed that talks are taking place with a new potential buyer for an empty hospital.

Last autumn NHS Suffolk said it was looking at “alternative options” for the future of the Bartlet at Felixstowe following the failure to conclude its sale after more than two years of trying.

It had agreed to sell the hospital to the PJ Livesey Group for conversion into luxury apartments.

That was in mid-2007, but the development company failed to submit plans, despite negotiations with Suffolk Coastal over possible designs.

Now NHS Suffolk is talking to a new company about a project, but no details have yet been revealed about the firm or its plans.

Martin Royal, director of business development and external relations at NHS Suffolk, said: “We are currently in detailed discussions with another potential purchaser for the Bartlet who has offered favourable terms and conditions.”

He ruled out any chance of the health service using it as a place for people recovering from operations and said delays facing people waiting to be discharged from Ipswich Hospital were mainly connected with patient choice – where a person had expressed a preference for a specific care home.

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Campaigners from the Bartlet Bequest Action Group, which still harbours hopes of running it as an independent health centre, is holding a public meeting on February 19 at 7.30pm at St Felix Church Hall, Gainsborough Road, to discuss the building’s future.

Roy Gray, chairman of Felixstowe Save Our Hospitals Action Group, said: “It is a difficult situation but I think most people would rather see the building used than stand there empty.”

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