Plans for hospital revamp

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NEWTON Lodge secure hospital could be demolished and rebuilt as part of a £10m reconstruction.

The plans include a new therapeutic centre for patients recovering at Fieldhead Hospital and an extension of a specialist women’s service.

The project, which would be completed by the summer of 2013, would involve the current site being demolished and rebuilt.

The medium-secure facility on Ouchthorpe Lane is used to treat mental health patients and dangerous mentally ill convicted criminals.

Dr Adrian Berry, the trust’s director of forensic services, said: “This plan will ensure we can provide modern, high quality mental health care.

“The expansion of the women’s service would mean that women who currently require this level of care and have to receive it out of the local area, would be able to get it locally.”

Planning permission for a medium secure unit at Newton Lodge was refused by Wakefield Council in 2005 due to backlash from local residents over the scale and visual impact of the development.

But a £6m specialist learning disability facility was approved and built on the site in 2007.

A public consultation meeting takes place next week before a new planning application is submitted.

People can have their say on the plans at Fieldhead’s Learning and Development Centre, on Monday at 6pm and 7.30pm, and Tuesday at 10am.