Harrogate District Hospital: Yorkshire hospital given almost £10m to tackle 'crumbly concrete'

A Yorkshire hospital has received a further £9.5m from the NHS to tackle ‘crumbly concrete’, also known as RAAC, after it was discovered there last year.

The money will be spent replacing the therapy services department building at Harrogate District Hospital, on Lancaster Road, with demolition work set to begin this month. It will be replaced with a new day case surgery and imaging building.

In the meantime, all services will be relocated within the hospital except for the podiatry and speech and language therapy services, which will move to a new location in Harrogate.

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RAAC, which stands for reinforced autoclaved aerated concrete, is a lightweight material that is less durable than traditional concrete and has a life expectancy of just 30 years before it runs the risk of collapse.

Harrogate District Hospital has received a further £9.5m from the NHS to tackle ‘crumbly concrete’ at the siteHarrogate District Hospital has received a further £9.5m from the NHS to tackle ‘crumbly concrete’ at the site
Harrogate District Hospital has received a further £9.5m from the NHS to tackle ‘crumbly concrete’ at the site

Harrogate & District Foundation NHS Trust has now received £11m from the NHS since it found 2,500 panels containing the material across the estate. The hospital estimates it will cost £20m to remove RAAC permanently.

The first section of Harrogate District Hospital was built in 1975 during a period when RAAC was used in the construction of public buildings.

Matt Graham, director of strategy at Harrogate and District NHS Foundation Trust said: “Demolition should be completed by early September, and construction of the replacement building will then begin. The new building will include two new operating theatres to increase the number of elective operations per year, a dedicated ward to support the new theatres, and enhanced X Ray, CT, MRI and Ultrasound services. This will help to further improve on the high-quality healthcare service we provide to our community.

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“Over the last few months we have been working to relocate the services currently occupying the building to ensure that patients’ appointments are unaffected. The majority of services will remain within the hospital with the exception of Podiatry and some Speech and Language Therapy Services, which will move to a new location in Harrogate.

“We are continuing to develop detailed plans for eradication of the remaining RAAC at Harrogate District Hospital and will be seeking further financial support from NHS England.”

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