Developer partnership discussions signal real progress on much-needed new hospital for St Mary’s, Paddington

Plans for a major new hospital for London have been boosted with a formal agreement to enter into partnership discussions between Imperial College Healthcare NHS Trust and Great Western Developments Ltd, working with Sellar. The agreement will allow joint work and engagement to take place over the next six months on how the developer could build a new St Mary’s Hospital that meets the needs of patients, staff and the local population, helping to achieve the Trust’s vision of ‘better health, for life’.

The Trust will also feed into the developer’s proposal to reinvigorate the wider St Mary’s estate, linking in with the adjacent mixed-use Paddington Square development and new entrance to Paddington Station.

A new St Mary’s Hospital, plus significant new developments and refurbishments at the Trust’s Charing Cross and Hammersmith/Queen Charlotte’s and Chelsea hospitals, is included in the Government’s Health Infrastructure Plan. An initial £5 million was awarded to the Trust last month to help it produce detailed plans and business cases for the redevelopments. Additional Government funding will be sought to help complete the funding requirements for all of the developments.

Imperial College Healthcare NHS Trust chief executive, Professor Tim Orchard, said: “I’m really proud that our staff continue to push the boundaries of clinical practice, adding to our long legacy of high quality care, research and education. Our buildings, however, have not kept pace and are really showing their age, with many well over 70 years old. We are spending around £20 million on maintenance every year, just to stand still. We’ve had an independent estimate that St Mary’s has only seven to ten years before a major estates failure requires permanent closure of significant capacity. Our patients and staff deserve so much better.

“We have to make the most of the once-in-a-generation opportunity, created by Paddington area regeneration combined with Government investment in NHS infrastructure, to produce a hospital for the future at St Mary’s. One that has impact locally, nationally and internationally, setting new benchmarks for innovation, user experience and community benefit. Initial architectural plans commissioned by the developer from Foster + Partners are both exciting and practical. The agreement will allow us now to work with our staff, patients and other stakeholders to develop a shared aspiration for the new hospital and to ensure it can be delivered.

“The St Mary’s development would unlock opportunities for transformation at our other sites that are smaller scale but just as much needed. This holistic approach to our estate means we can ensure it really supports the changes in care and support required by our local population across central and west London, as well as by patients further afield who can also benefit from our specialist services, research and innovation. St Mary’s will continue to be one of four major trauma centres for London as well as to provide a wide range of acute and specialist diagnostics, consultation, treatment and surgery.”

The new St Mary’s Hospital would be built on an area of the existing hospital site in Paddington, primarily in return for land that would then be surplus to requirements.
The Trust is also working closely with Imperial Health Charity, who own part of the St Mary’s land earmarked for wider development, as well as Imperial College London, the Trust’s research and education partner.

Imperial Health Charity chief executive, Ian Lush, said: “As the Trust’s official charity, we are committed to investing in our hospitals, now and for the future. It’s clear that major redevelopment and refurbishment is desperately needed across all of the Trust’s sites. We are looking forward to playing our full role to ensure we get the best for patients and the local community.”

The discussions are starting with an outline timetable for planning and business case approvals for St Mary’s to be completed by early 2022 and a new hospital built and fitted out by 2027. Significant improvements at Charing Cross and Hammersmith are currently slated to begin in 2022.

The work programme over the next six months will include establishing the proposed size and scale of the St Mary’s development as well as of the improvements at Charing Cross and Hammersmith hospitals. Already, the Trust has been clear that it believes it needs at least the same number of inpatient beds at all three of its main sites - and most likely more - and that it will continue to run full A&Es at St Mary’s and Charing Cross. The Trust has also been clear that its Western Eye Hospital would benefit from moving from its ageing, stand-alone building in Marylebone and being re-located with complementary services on one of its other sites. Proceeds from a potential sale of the Western Eye will be considered as part of the funding approach for the whole redevelopment strategy. The strategy will not involve the sale of any land at Charing Cross or Hammersmith hospitals.


Imperial College Healthcare NHS Trust provides acute and specialist health care in north west London for around a million and a half people every year. It is one of the largest NHS trusts in the country, with over 12,000 staff. Its five hospitals – Charing Cross, Hammersmith, Queen Charlotte’s & Chelsea, St Mary’s and the Western Eye – have a long track record in research and education, influencing clinical practice nationally and worldwide.

Imperial Health Charity helps the five hospitals of Imperial College Healthcare NHS Trust do more through grants, arts, volunteering and fundraising. The charity funds major redevelopments, research and medical equipment, as well as helping patients and their families at times of extreme financial difficulty. Supporting the arts in healthcare, the charity also manages an Arts Council accredited hospital art collection and runs an arts engagement programme for patients and NHS staff. It manages volunteering across all five hospitals, adding value to the work of staff and helping to improve the hospital experience for patients.

Sellar is a British property group, globally recognised as the creator of the ground-breaking London Bridge Quarter regeneration area, which was developed in consultation with multiple stakeholders including TfL, Network Rail, and Guy's and St Thomas' NHS Foundation Trust.

Great Western Developments is a subsidiary of HPL, which is publicly listed on the Singapore Stock Exchange.

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