Patients moved away from King’s Cross towers
Rapid changes at former railway lands ‘a factor' behind St Pancras Hospital’s move to a new site
16 February, 2018 — By Tom Foot
St Pancras Hospital is relocating to a new site in Archway
TOWER blocks shooting up on the King’s Cross regeneration site have been blamed for a loss of privacy for mental health hospital patients.
The rapid changes on the former railway lands are cited as a reason for St Pancras Hospital, in St Pancras Way, Somers Town, relocating to a new site in Archway.
Angela McNab, chief executive of Camden and Islington NHS Foundation Trust, said the number of tall buildings “was a factor” behind the move to a new site near the Whittington Hospital.
“We are relocating inpatient beds to a site where there be won’t be that issue of being overlooked,” she said. “It is really important. We want patients to enjoy their outdoor space and not have their privacy or dignity compromised.”
Medical director Dr Vincent Kirchner said there were high buildings all around the existing site. “If you have 12 or 14 storey buildings all around, it is not ideal,” he added.
The trust, which owns the sprawling St Pancras site, is in advanced talks with the Whittington about building new inpatient wards at the back of the hospital’s main site.
The new wards would replace huge nursing accommodation blocks and an education centre on land that the Whittington wants to sell off as part of its estates strategy.
Ms McNab said: “We would be having the number of beds we have now. We are not cutting services, we are not cutting beds.”
The plan, due for public consultation in May, would be funded through the sale of a so-far undecided section of the St Pancras site to a housing developer and a NHS provider, expected to be Moorfields Eye Hospital.
Ms McNab said the aim was to have mental health beds close to the Whittington, and to fund modernised blocks for patient services back on the St Pancras site.