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Plan for bigger Airedale Hospital A&E unit criticised
9:00am Wednesday 21st August 2013 in News
The hospital trust hopes the new, larger facility will help reduce waiting times. In the past year, the number of patients waiting at A&E more than four hours rose by 265 per cent.
Last month the trust submitted a planning application to Bradford Council for the demolition of the existing A&E unit and construction of a much larger one in its place.
The cost of the new building has been estimated as being between £4 million and £6 million.
But the plans have not been universally welcomed, and a number of the hospital’s neighbours have written to the Council to ask for the expansion to be refused.
One said it would devalue his house and would expose residents to abusive patients, while others have criticised plans for a large, lit-up “Emergency” sign on the building. Some fear patients at the new facility would be able to see into their homes from hospital windows.
Steeton Parish Council has also criticised the application. A letter from the council to planning officers says: “The development will have a detrimental effect on the amenity of neighbouring residential properties, including noise caused by vehicle movements, staff and patients, exterior lighting and invasion of privacy as homes are clearly visible from inside the A&E unit and onsite security cameras.”
They have asked that if the plans are approved, any CCTV cameras should face away from nearby houses and that obscured glazing be used for hospital windows to prevent patients from being able to see outside.
One bone of contention among residents was a large “Emergency” sign.
David Parker, a resident of neighbouring Styveton Way, said: “The emergency sign is far too large and will impact on the surrounding area, especially when illuminated.”
Stephen Parkinson, also from Styveton Way, said: “When we moved here we accepted the fact that there was the hospital, but we now find the plans to extend both upwards and outwards will affect our privacy even more when we are already subjected to outbursts from drunk and disorderly patients. There is absolutely no doubt that the proposed plans, if passed, will devalue our property.”
Bradford Council aims to decide on the application by the end of September.
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