HC Deb 06 July 1964 vol 698 cc4-5W
52. Mr. Lipton

asked the Minister of Health if he will give the total amount of the decrease in the financial content of the hospital building programme 1963 to 1974 shown by the latest revision as compared with the programme previously agreed for the South-West Metropolitan Regional Hospital Board, the schemes which have now been excluded until the period 1970 to 1974, and the schemes originally included in the period up to 1972–73 but now deferred beyond 1974.

Mr. Barber

The financial content of the hospital building programme for this region has not been decreased, as implied in the hon. Member's Question. On the contrary, this year's revision shows an increase for the region of £8 million compared with what was originally proposed.

As I have previously explained, with changes in priorities, involving the development of new projects in the national programme and the bringing forward and the enlargement of others, it has been necessary despite an increased hospital programme in real terms, to defer some schemes. The schemes suggested as likely to start within the original programme but now beyond it and expected to start before the end of the ten-year programme of the revised plan are as follows: New district general hospital at Aldershot (Frimley). Southlands Hospital, Worthing—further development Royal Earlswood Hospital—further modernisation.

Of the schemes which were in the programme following the first revision only the Woking Victoria Hospital ward block has been deferred beyond 1974.

Many schemes now differ considerably in scope from what was earlier envisaged, and are likely to change further.