£3.8m care home bid for former Blackburn infirmary

Lancashire Telegraph: Demolition work at the former Blackburn Royal Infirmary site Demolition work at the former Blackburn Royal Infirmary site

PLANS to transform the former Blackburn Royal Infirmary’s dilapidated War Memorial Wing into a £3.8 million residential care centre are in the pipeline.

Ideal Care Homes hopes to develop the site into a 64 bed, three-storey home by summer 2014.

If the health service provider is granted permission, the 84-year-old wing built by public subscription to commemorate the dead of the First World War, could be demolished next summer.

Since the original plans for the site stalled three years ago, the imposing building has been targeted by thieves and vandals till it decayed into an unsafe eyesore.

The planned home will offer pensioners ‘extra care and support’ and the new proposal follows the start of building work to turn the rest of the old infirmary site into a £10.6 million 123 homes housing estate.

Andrew Long, for Ideal Care said: “This is an exciting project for Blackburn.

“If we get the go ahead we will be investing £3.8 million and creating between 50 and 60 jobs within the local community. As with each of Idea Care Homes 34 centres, we will be able to offer anyone who needs a place, a place regardless of their financial means.

“Unfortunately, the existing hospital building is not fit for purpose and with it being left open to the elements it would cost a vast amount of money to make it functional.”

Professor David Smalley, president of Blackburn Darwen and Rural Civic Voice, said: “This is an acceptable compromise, better than a bingo hall.

“It should have something included commemorating why it was built to save lives in memory of those who died in the First World War.”

Ewood Coun Maureen Bateson, said: “I am really pleased to hear about plans for this much needed development.

“So far they have received really positive feedback that will add to the developments already taking place on this site.” Borough social care chief Mohammed Khan said: “The council is keen on any plans that will provide high quality housing for older people in the borough.

“We will be very interested to see the detailed proposals which will have to go through the proper channels.”

Blackburn MP Jack Straw said: “This is a welcome development which reflects the building’s original purpose.”

Comments (13)

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8:11pm Wed 19 Dec 12

Scooby says...

No! It's a piece of Blackburn's history, bought by the people as a memory of those who died to protect us.

The housing company which bought the site said they would keep the building.. if they haven't bothered to maintain it, they should be charged for all the costs of bringing it back to a suitable condition.

Cannot believe that the elected members of our council would be so happy to throw away a part of towns history and culture so easily! Disgusting and stinks of a cash in hand deal
No! It's a piece of Blackburn's history, bought by the people as a memory of those who died to protect us. The housing company which bought the site said they would keep the building.. if they haven't bothered to maintain it, they should be charged for all the costs of bringing it back to a suitable condition. Cannot believe that the elected members of our council would be so happy to throw away a part of towns history and culture so easily! Disgusting and stinks of a cash in hand deal Scooby

8:15pm Wed 19 Dec 12

mark lee says...

Well said.
Well said. mark lee

8:32pm Wed 19 Dec 12

phil kernot says...

shame on you weak councilors , cant even have the balls to get the buyers to stick to the aggrement to save the blackburns heritage , i got told off the security when thay was on there thay only had a short contract to protect the building , then thay could let the building fall too bits a knock it down , no point in having councilors cause there just like pigs in a trough feeding themselves and not fight for the people oink oink oink oink brigade
shame on you weak councilors , cant even have the balls to get the buyers to stick to the aggrement to save the blackburns heritage , i got told off the security when thay was on there thay only had a short contract to protect the building , then thay could let the building fall too bits a knock it down , no point in having councilors cause there just like pigs in a trough feeding themselves and not fight for the people oink oink oink oink brigade phil kernot

9:08pm Wed 19 Dec 12

GrindletonBob says...

“Unfortunately, the existing hospital building is not fit for purpose and with it being left open to the elements it would cost a vast amount of money to make it functional.”

Make those responsible for leaving it open to the elements complete the necessary works, given the act was deliberate so that the argument could be made that the building was beyond repair. No doubt the Councillors involved will get the necessary backhanders or offers of financial support for one of their pet projects so I await the bulldozers moving in.
“Unfortunately, the existing hospital building is not fit for purpose and with it being left open to the elements it would cost a vast amount of money to make it functional.” Make those responsible for leaving it open to the elements complete the necessary works, given the act was deliberate so that the argument could be made that the building was beyond repair. No doubt the Councillors involved will get the necessary backhanders or offers of financial support for one of their pet projects so I await the bulldozers moving in. GrindletonBob

9:19pm Wed 19 Dec 12

Scooby says...

Anyone know much about the law? Just found the War Memorials (Local Authorities’ Powers) Act 1923 which states - A local authority may incur reasonable expenditure in the maintenance, repair and protection of any war memorial within their district

Which as I'm reading it, means the Council have the legal right to protect the War Memorial... no excuse for not taking legal action on behalf of the town?
Anyone know much about the law? Just found the War Memorials (Local Authorities’ Powers) Act 1923 which states - A local authority may incur reasonable expenditure in the maintenance, repair and protection of any war memorial within their district [whether vested in them or not.] Which as I'm reading it, means the Council have the legal right to protect the War Memorial... no excuse for not taking legal action on behalf of the town? Scooby

8:08am Thu 20 Dec 12

A Darener says...

To let it deteriorate beyond repair was always the intention. Nobody was going to take on the task of maintaining such a vast building. It would have cost millions to convert it into something useful. Slowly but surely the face of Blackburn is going to change, and not for the better.
To let it deteriorate beyond repair was always the intention. Nobody was going to take on the task of maintaining such a vast building. It would have cost millions to convert it into something useful. Slowly but surely the face of Blackburn is going to change, and not for the better. A Darener

9:09am Thu 20 Dec 12

sean_brfc says...

What a joke. Another of Blackburn's memorable old buildings looks set to bite the dust. Shame on the council for letting it get to this and then councillors having the cheek to say how wonderful it is!
What a joke. Another of Blackburn's memorable old buildings looks set to bite the dust. Shame on the council for letting it get to this and then councillors having the cheek to say how wonderful it is! sean_brfc

10:22am Thu 20 Dec 12

vicn1956 says...

Why worry? They'll all get voted back in next election.
Why worry? They'll all get voted back in next election. vicn1956

10:35am Thu 20 Dec 12

vicn1956 says...

I see this story is written by your crime reporter!!!
I see this story is written by your crime reporter!!! vicn1956

11:27am Thu 20 Dec 12

sonny says...

A Darener wrote:
To let it deteriorate beyond repair was always the intention. Nobody was going to take on the task of maintaining such a vast building. It would have cost millions to convert it into something useful. Slowly but surely the face of Blackburn is going to change, and not for the better.
sickening that they where so blatantly allowed to let the hospital rot for so long, I noticed they are using the same scam on that old listed building that's in the way of the final piece of the orbital route on King street, its just wrong.
[quote][p][bold]A Darener[/bold] wrote: To let it deteriorate beyond repair was always the intention. Nobody was going to take on the task of maintaining such a vast building. It would have cost millions to convert it into something useful. Slowly but surely the face of Blackburn is going to change, and not for the better.[/p][/quote]sickening that they where so blatantly allowed to let the hospital rot for so long, I noticed they are using the same scam on that old listed building that's in the way of the final piece of the orbital route on King street, its just wrong. sonny

10:36pm Thu 20 Dec 12

Darwen Malc says...

vicn1956 wrote:
Why worry? They'll all get voted back in next election.
Exactly, and all those who keep complaining on this website about whats happening to Blackburn and how its all going downhill, will go out like sheep and vote Labour back in again. You get what you deserve!
[quote][p][bold]vicn1956[/bold] wrote: Why worry? They'll all get voted back in next election.[/p][/quote]Exactly, and all those who keep complaining on this website about whats happening to Blackburn and how its all going downhill, will go out like sheep and vote Labour back in again. You get what you deserve! Darwen Malc

10:50pm Thu 20 Dec 12

Scooby says...

Darwen Malc wrote:
vicn1956 wrote:
Why worry? They'll all get voted back in next election.
Exactly, and all those who keep complaining on this website about whats happening to Blackburn and how its all going downhill, will go out like sheep and vote Labour back in again. You get what you deserve!
You really shouldn't be so assumptive..
[quote][p][bold]Darwen Malc[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]vicn1956[/bold] wrote: Why worry? They'll all get voted back in next election.[/p][/quote]Exactly, and all those who keep complaining on this website about whats happening to Blackburn and how its all going downhill, will go out like sheep and vote Labour back in again. You get what you deserve![/p][/quote]You really shouldn't be so assumptive.. Scooby

1:33am Sat 22 Dec 12

2 for 5p says...

war memorial Bah
get it pulled down and put something usefull there
war memorial Bah get it pulled down and put something usefull there 2 for 5p

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