NHS to sell Lewes site to developers

Springman House, North Street. Photo courtesy of Google Maps Street View. SUS-150722-121939001
Springman House, North Street. Photo courtesy of Google Maps Street View. SUS-150722-121939001

Two NHS organisations are working together to sell a surplus site in Lewes for redevelopment.

NHS Property Services and South East Coast Ambulance Service NHS Foundation Trust (SECAmb) are bringing the Springman House site, in North Street, to the market for sale.

NHS Property Services owns a 0.4-acre section of the 0.6-acre site, which contains a car park and a three-storey, brick-clad concrete office block, that has been empty for years. The rest of the site is owned by SECAmb and used as an ambulance station.

The 0.4-acre section transferred to the ownership of NHS Property Services from the Primary Care Trust following the health reforms of 2013 and has been declared surplus to NHS requirements by NHS healthcare commissioners.

Independent chartered surveyors say it would not make financial sense to refurbish the building and agents have said that selling the site for housing would achieve best value for the NHS and the taxpayer.

NHS Property Services has established the right to change the use of the vacant building from offices to residential.

The property has been listed as being available to other public sector bodies but none have expressed an interest in acquiring the site.

SECAmb has been reviewing its estate in the area as part of it plans to develop a purpose-built hub expected to be developed in Brighton. The Trust will either look to relocate to another location in the area or retain a small part of the site for an ambulance community response post.

Senior operations manager, James Pavey, said: “As we move to our new operational model, we will no longer need larger ambulance stations as stocking, maintaining vehicles and equipment will be undertaken at the operational hubs.

“However, we are determined to ensure that we continue to provide a responsive service in the area and will retain a presence either here or at a new location locally.

“No change will be undertaken until a new site or refurbishment of the old site has taken place.”

James Wakeham, NHS Property Services regional director, added: “This is a great example of partnership working. Selling this surplus site will bring in vital funds for the NHS to benefit patients and allow a building that has gone beyond its useful life to be redeveloped.”

Proceeds from any sale would be split between NHS Property Services and SECAmb and the NHS would no longer have to foot the cost of maintaining and securing the site.

The organisations are inviting offers for the site and proceeds from the sale of the site would go back to the NHS.

The property is being marketed by Strutt and Parker – anyone interested in acquiring the site should call 01483-405157 or click on www.struttandparker.com.

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