Today Cllr Ian Ward, Leader of Birmingham City Council, and Deputy Leader, Cllr Brigid Jones, have visited the locked gates of the building site of the new, but yet-to-be-completed Midland Metropolitan Hospital, that was being built by Carillion before the company’s collapse two weeks ago.
Since Carillion went into liquidation the site has been shut down, although the hospital is only two thirds complete.
The project, which has already had an extra six months added to its completion date due to engineering problems, now looks to be delayed even further – with no fixed date on when works on the new hospital will resume.
Cllr Brigid Jones, Deputy Leader of Birmingham City Council, said:
“It’s vital that this unfinished super-hospital is not left to fall into disrepair. The hospital must be completed and work should resume as quickly as possible.
“If the Tories don’t take control of this situation – it is going to cost tax-payers a lot more in the long-term. Contractors who have found themselves off-site for over two weeks will rightly be looking for other work to pay their rent, mortgages and bills.
“The best thing, for the people who’ve been working on the build, and for those thousands of people in Sandwell and West Birmingham who will be served by the new hospital, is for the Government to get people back to work as soon as possible.
“But we know that the Tories’ track record in Birmingham is dire. We are seen as second-class citizens by the Tories who’ve cut Birmingham by £650 million since 2010.
“In May, Brummies have a choice as we face all-out elections in Birmingham. Labour will fight for a properly resourced and funded NHS for our city; to save walk-in centres, cut waiting times to see your GP, cut queues in A&E and tackle delays for routine operations and appointments. The Tories will continue to cut, underfund and under staff our NHS.
Jonathan Ashworth MP, Labour’s Shadow Health Secretary, said:
“The Government need to clean up this sorry saga and ensure that this hospital is up and running as quickly as possible. Delays will not only affect patients but will add substantially to the costs involved.”