PRESS RELEASE : CRISPIN BLUNT DEFENDS EPSOM AND ST HELIER NHS HOSPITAL TRUST’S RIGHT TO MAXIMISE ITS PROPERTY ASSETS TO DELIVER IMPROVED HEALTH CARE FACILITIES

Prior to a Trust Board meeting on 10th August, Crispin Blunt has today expressed his support for Daniel Elkeles and the Board of Epsom and St Helier University Hospitals NHS Trust in their quest to maximise assets to improve hospital services for residents in its catchment area.

The Trust has recently published plans in the Investors Journal for land on part of the Epsom Hospital site, currently unused for hospital services, to be sold for the development of flats in order to raise capital for planned improvements to Epsom Hospital and to support plans to develop a new dedicated acute care facility.

Crispin Blunt commented: “I support the Trust’s decision to seek full value from this unused land as part of the Hospital Trust’s long-term development strategy. I am of the opinion that this is a legitimate exercise in order for the Trust to fully assess the financial implications of the plan to restructure Epsom and St Helier Hospitals and develop a specialist acute care unit, possibly in Sutton; a proposal which I fully support.

It is a matter for the Hospital Trust to decide how best they manage this process and the objections are especially unhelpful in that the plans, all be it that they will be subject to local planning considerations and may ultimately include some health and social care provision, could add to the local housing supply at a time when local authorities such as Epsom and Ewell are under pressure to provide more new housing.  

I am aware that there has been opposition to this proposal based on the view that this land should be used directly for new hospital care and accommodation facilities. However, it is a matter for the Trust to decide how best to maximise its assets to deliver improved delivery and some of the opposition appears to be based on an emotional attachment to Epsom Hospital, rather than a rational view on how the Trust can best improve general and specialist hospital care services for everyone in its delivery area.”