The Royal Cornwall Hospitals NHS Trust is one step closer to being able to deliver a new Women and Children’s Hospital for Cornwall after appointing BAM as its Principal Supply Chain Partner.  

The proposed new building has been designed to bring together the hospital’s maternity services, neo-natal and paediatric care, obstetrics and gynaecology services within one, state-of-the-art facility. It would also become the location for the hospital’s new main entrance, transforming the layout of the current site in Truro. 

The programme, which has expanded in scope since its inception, is starting with the demolition of six derelict houses to create the space for a works compound for BAM whilst major enabling and building works for the new hospital are carried out over the next six years. Work is also underway to relocate car parking for patients and visitors, another key enabling project in progressing the wider programme.

The Women and Children’s Hospital is part of the Government’s New Hospital Programme, which is focused on delivering 48 new hospitals across England  by 2030. These hospitals are being built to national standards using modern methods of construction, with environmental features throughout to support the NHS’s carbon net zero ambitions. Smart digital innovations and enhancements are also planned for the scheme for example, creating sensory and interactive play areas, systems to connect families and carers remotely in the delivery of care, and enhancements to the management of patient call systems to provide a quieter, calmer environment on the wards.

Roberta Fuller, Programme Director for the Women and Children’s Hospital, and Head of Hospital Reconfiguration at Royal Cornwall Hospital Trust, said of the appointment: “We are delighted to have appointed BAM as our Principal Supply Chain Partner. This is a really important partnership for the Royal Cornwall Hospital, and we are pleased to be moving forward with the enabling works projects with support from the New Hospital Programme. Our designs for the new Women and Children’s Hospital are based on meeting the needs of our local community in Cornwall and will transform the hospital site. Bringing services together, along with bigger rooms and better facilities, will improve patient flow and create spaces in which to provide outstanding care long into the future.” 

“What makes a building come to life from the outset is the strength of understanding between all the parties. That is what drives our ability to innovate, find additional sustainability solutions, and add value to the local economy and communities. Our goal is to  deliver the new hospital to agreed timescales,  solving  problems as we go through the intelligent use of technology.

“The chance to build something special for so many people brings with it an obligation on us, as a responsible business, to use this opportunity to improve the lives of those around us. BAM will be working not just inside the hospital environment but also with the local communities in Cornwall to do our best to leave a positive community legacy, as well as an outstanding new hospital.”

Graham Kingdon

Construction Director, Western Region, BAM

Royal Cornwall Hospitals NHS Trust Chief Executive, Steve Williamson said: “This is an exciting time for RCHT and for the people of Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly.  Over the last four years, there has been an immense amount of hard work undertaken behind the scenes, not just here at our hospitals, but also with our partners at NHS England, the Department of Health and Social Care and, more recently, with the New Hospital Programme teams. We’re delighted to see the plans for our Women and Children’s Hospital Programme progress to this stage, and to witness the start of the initial enabling works.”

Health Minister Lord Markham said: “This is a significant step for people in Cornwall being able to access a new Women and Children’s Hospital to improve the care being delivered to the community. 

“The new building will bring multiple services under one state of the art facility, including maternity services, neo-natal and paediatric care and obstetrics and gynaecology services. 

“This is yet another example of the government delivering on our commitment to provide state of the art facilities for NHS patients.”

The Women and Children’s Hospital programme is currently at Outline Business Case stage and, having been through an extensive and comprehensive Technical Assurance Review process, was recommended on 3rd February 2023 to go forward to His Majesty’s Treasury for next stage approval. The outcome of this recommendation is expected in the next few weeks.   Enabling works for the new hospital will continue into 2024 and 2025, with the provision of a new Pathology building and the relocation of Cardiac and Pharmacy  services  to make way for the new building.  The entire programme is anticipated to complete in 2028.