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University Hospitals Dorset NHS Foundation Trust

‘Ground breaking day’ for The BEACH Building at The Royal Bournemouth Hospital

On 3 November 2021, The Royal Bournemouth Hospital hosted a ground breaking ceremony to mark the start of The BEACH Building’s construction. This was in the presence of representatives from University Hospitals Dorset NHS Foundation Trust (UHD) and the main contractor Integrated Health Projects (IHP). The latter is a joint venture between VINCI Construction UK and Sir Robert McAlpine.

The BEACH Building (Births, Emergency care, And, Critical care and child Heasnip wide shotlth) is 23,000m2 of complex hospital development over six storeys - equivalent to 115 tennis courts. It provides a new maternity unit, children’s unit, enhanced emergency department and critical care unit. This will enable the Royal Bournemouth Hospital to become the major emergency hospital for Dorset.

The ceremony marked the preparation of the first of 515 pile positions that support the foundations of The BEACH Building.

A Bagpipe player led around 50 guests to the construction site, where IHP representatives gifted tankards to Pankaj Davé, chair of UHD’s Transformation Committee, before breaking ground on the construction site.

Richard Renaut, UHD’s Chief Strategy and Transformation Officer, said: “This is a ground-breaking day in many ways as we celebrate what is a significant milestone for our local NHS and the patients we serve.

“The establishment of The BEACH Building represents significant investment and commitment by the NHS. 

“It will be a modern, sustainable building, providing high quality facilities for our existing services, allowing our clinical teams to improve the way we deliver the services within it. 

“On behalf of our Board I’d like to thank all the team effort for getting us to this stage today.”

Ian Cheung, Managing Director South, Sir Robert McAlpine, said: “I am proud that we have reached this important milestone and that we have kept on track with enabling the scheme, despite the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic.

"This is testament to the great engagement, commitment and support from UHD, the IHP project team, and local industry.

"I look forward to delivering this state-of-the-art healthcare facility to serve the communities in Dorset.”

Jason Griffiths, VINCI’s Regional Director for London and South, said: “This project represents exactly what the IHP Joint Venture was formed to deliver.

"Through our technical expertise and leadership, our aim is to deliver this outstanding healthcare scheme using Modern Methods of Construction (MMC), constructing offsite where possible, and in a sustainable manner which minimises the impact on the environment.”

The construction work has been designed to minimise disruptions to the Royal Bournemouth site over the duration of the project. The BEACH Building is planned to open in Autumn 2024 and forms part of the £250m transformation of UHD’s hospitals, including investment to develop Poole Hospital as the major planned care hospital and ambitious plans for Christchurch Hospital.

The highlights from The BEACH Building ground breaking ceremony can be seen here

Further information:

On completion The BEACH Building at RBH will contain:

  • a new emergency department - larger than current Poole and Royal Bournemouth Hospital facilities put together
  • a brand-new maternity and children’s unit
  • a new critical care unit with capacity for up to 30 beds

Other planned developments on the RBH site include a purpose-designed pathology hub providing a modern, flexible testing capacity.

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