Improvement work at Leicester hospital given green light

The creation of a new mental health building at Glenfield Hospital has been approved by councillors. The new unit will be built on fields at the edge of the current hospital site and will replace the existing Bradgate Unit also located at Glenfield Hospital.

The unit’s design “does not support person-centred care, particularly with regard to privacy and dignity”. As such, there is “an immediate and urgent need” to improve the mental health facilities offered by Leicestershire Partnership Trust (LPT), the application added.

Councillors on Blaby District Council’s planning committee voted to approve the scheme last night in line with officers’ recommendations. The proposal for the new building was only an outline plan, meaning it has been approved in principle, with the concrete details to be agreed through a later application.

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The application suggested it would be a one, two and three-storey building which features four adult mental health wards, an “urgent care hub”, off-ward therapy spaces and an education and training centre. It would be situated on predominantly greenfield – previously undeveloped – land to the west of Glenfield Hospital, next to the Leicestershire County Council headquarters.

If built, it is expected that staff, patients and services at the Bradgate Unit would be moved into the new facility. The Bradgate unit would then be “decommissioned for clinical purposes”.

A new service road also forms part of the plan and full planning permission was granted for this at last night’s meeting. This is to be a one-way access route with drop-off points at the back of each ward to allow deliveries to be made directly with minimal disruption for patients, a report by planning officers said. It will loop around the south, west and north of the site.

Later phases of planned improvements of the Glenfield Hospital site, which have not yet been submitted to the planning department for consideration, would seek to demolish the building and redevelop the area. LPT is exploring the option of constructing a permanent pharmacy building there instead, the application stated.

Also debated at last night's meeting was the second attempt to gain permission for the hugely controversial Enderby Logistics Hub.