To mark the occasion, Brendan Clarke Smith, MP for Bassetlaw, senior colleagues from the Trust, as well as construction partners, IHP Vinci and Archus, took part in a topping out ceremony to celebrate the end of the structural construction phase, with the focus now shifting to the interiors ahead of opening in late summer.
Those in attendance signed the final panel to be placed into the building, which is now watertight and ready for the next phase of development.
Brendan Clarke Smith, Member of Parliament for Bassetlaw, expressed his support for the milestone achievement, saying: “The topping out ceremony marks a crucial step towards the realisation of the Bassetlaw Emergency Village. This project, backed by the government’s substantial investment, underscores our commitment to improving healthcare services for the Bassetlaw community.
“The enhanced Emergency Department will undoubtedly make a significant impact on the accessibility and quality of care for our residents – I’m looking forward to the service opening its doors later in the year.”
Initiated in July 2023 with a £17.6 million pledge from the UK government, the Emergency Village is designed to improve and expand emergency care services for the Bassetlaw community, as well as enable 24/7 inpatient paediatric care.
Once opened, all urgent and emergency care services at Bassetlaw Hospital will be housed within the new facility, alongside paediatric and acute care. The footprint inhabited by the new building is within the former car park opposite the main entrance, as well as accommodation previously used by Nottinghamshire Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust.
Dr Kirsty Edmondson Jones, Director of Innovation and Infrastructure at Doncaster and Bassetlaw Teaching Hospitals (DBTH) and the Project’s Senior Responsible Officer, said: “The Emergency Village at Bassetlaw Hospital is a crucial step forward for our Trust and the local community. This investment will enhance our Emergency Department, ensuring timely access to high-quality care for our patients, as well as return overnight paediatric services which were temporarily relocated to Doncaster Royal Infirmary in 2017.”
To accommodate current works, a temporary ambulance route to the Emergency Department has been created, as well as alternative access points for those arriving by car via a newly created internal round.
Dr Kirsty Edmondson Jones reassured the community, stating, “Throughout this planned construction, our Emergency Department remains available for patients in a emergency. Please attend as usual.”
To enable the construction of the Emergency Village, a ground-breaking £15 million project was completed in early 2023. This initiative involved the removal of Reinforced Autoclaved Aerated Concrete (RAAC) roofing panels, making Doncaster and Bassetlaw Teaching Hospitals the first NHS trust in the country to completely eradicate this material from its hospitals.
The Bassetlaw Emergency Village project will be complete in late summer – at this point the name of the facility will revert to the Bassetlaw Emergency Department.