Hospital starts next week

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Work will finally begin on Bicester’s £5.2million new community hospital next Friday, June 7, with a groundbreaking ceremony at the site in Kings End. The first spade in the ground will put an end to years of delays and false starts over the long-awaited facility, which will replace the Victorian cottage hospital building.

The new hospital will have 12 in-patient beds, as well as an ambulance base, first aid unit, out-of-hours and out-patient areas.

It will also have imaging and physiotherapy suites, as well as an outdoor gym, therapy garden and public artworks.

Work had been due to start in January but the project was delayed by negotiations over financial guarantees following a change in the NHS’s structure.

Project director Riana Relihan has previously said she is confident the new hospital should be operational in July next year. Under the plans, the old community hospital will be demolished and a development of 14 two-bedroom and three-bedroom homes will be built in its place.

Work on the new hospital will be carried out by construction firm Mansell.