Hospital trust welcomes Springfield decision
South West London and St George's Mental Health NHS Trust (SWLSTG) has welcomed the decision of the Secretary of State to expand Springfield Hospital.
The Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government gave the green-light for it to build a new psychiatric hospital on the site, along with 389 homes and an elderly care home.
There will also be a new school, office space and car-parking, spelling the end of the Central London Golf Centre in Burntwood Lane.
In a judgement published last Thursday the planning inspector wrote: "There can be no doubt about the strength of objections to the proposal on the basis of its impact on the local highway network, on the public transport system and the consequential effect on people’s lives.
"However, the significant benefits of the proposed scheme and the potential risk of losing valuable mental health care in Wandsworth clearly tip the planning balance in its favour, even in the face of the harm."
It took five days for the trust to pore over the massive judgement before its chairman, Peter Moluneux, released a statement yesterday.
He said: "We have always been clear that our overriding motivation in pursuing this appeal is our duty of care to the people we serve.
"We are very pleased with the decision which means that we can now begin the work to develop the much-needed facilities which patients, staff and carers have told us are integral to providing the highest standard of care and aiding recovery.
"I want to reiterate our commitment to work with local partners and stakeholders in delivering a landmark development, combining both the quality of health facilities which we all expect for our families and friends and lasting benefits for the community.
"We will begin a process of engagement in early September, after the summer holiday period, to ensure that as many local people as possible can take part and share their views as the regeneration programme moves forward."
The trust planning application was turned down by Wandsworth Council, following opposition from more than 4,000 residents, Greater London Authority (GLA) member Richard Tracey, MP Sadiq Khan and golfer Colin Montgomerie, and the Government's decision to overrule it has been widely condemned.
Central London Golf Centre now faces the axe and its director, Geoff Daly, said: "We respect the decision of the Secretary of State.
"We are obviously very disappointed for the hundreds of thousands of children in the London community who will lose the only golfing facility in their borough."