New phase of plans for Leeds's former Cookridge Hospital

A developer has submitted new homes proposals for a former Leeds hospital as part of a housing project which has so far been seven years in the running.

Image by Ross Parry.

Blueprints for the next phase of Leeds-based Chartford Arthington’s re-generation of Cookridge Hospital, which closed a decade ago, have been lodged.

Approval has been requested for 30 homes at the site’s Cookridge building – 21 houses, seven of which would be new-builds, and nine apartments – while a parallel application is understood to have been submitted for a 64-unit elderly living scheme at the Ida building.

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Company director Matthew Fuller said the firm bought the site in 2011 after the NHS put it on the market amid the move to a new oncology unit at St James’s Hospital – but plans have progressed slower than anticipated following the economic downturn some years ago. He said: “We had a rush of blood and got very bold and said ‘Yeah, we can take it on’.”

Cookridge Hospital

The latest application is part of the company’s overall plans for more than 200 homes at the former cancer treatment hospital, including 162 new-builds.

Around 81 homes at the site and the Lighthouse School for autistic children at Arthington House have already been built.

Mr Fuller said: “It ticks all the boxes. There is special needs education, elderly housing, refurbishing old housing and new housing for families.”

He added: “Developers get a bad press which says all they want to do is get money, knock trees down and knock buildings down and it’s just not true.

Cookridge Hospital

“We’ve tried very hard to go a good job here. We’ve been able to sell anything we’ve built here as quickly as we could build it.”

The entire project is hoped to be finished in four years.