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Purley War Memorial Hospital reopens after

£11.15m refurbishment

By Phil Thomas

On behalf of the RRA, my wife and I attend the official opening of this newly refurbished hospital on 7 November 2013. The official opening of the building was performed by Croydon South MP, Richard Ottaway. Mr Ottaway has, for many years, been a strong campaigner to have this hospital refurbished and be re-used for residents in the south of the borough. It is generally agreed that travelling through and beyond Croydon, to Croydon University Hospital in Thornton Heath is not the easiest of journeys for us in the south, either by, train, car or bus.

Also in attendance at the opening were the Mayor, Councillor Yvette Hopley, Sanderstead Ward Councillor Lynne Hale, Council Leader Mike Fisher, Purley Ward Councillors, Graham Bass, Badsha Quadir, and Donald Speakman. The Croydon NHS Trust was represented by Mike Bell, Trust Chairman, John Goulston Chief Executive of the Trust and Paula Swann, Chief Officer of Croydon Clinical Commissioning Group.

The new physiotherapy and diabetic retinopathy (a test for an eye disease caused by diabetes) clinics re-started in July 2013 and there is an expanded imaging service providing a greater range of diagnostics, with x-ray, ultrasound and dexa (a type of x-ray used primarily for bone scans).

The Urgent Care Centre on the site, which has continued to serve the community during the renovation period, has now moved to its permanent home in the iconic old outpatients building facing Brighton Road.

The hospital currently sees around 3,000 patient attendances each month and there are plans to increase this to 7,500 per month by the end of March 2014. The RRA are aware that it has been reported in the press, that the Urgent Care Centre may reduce their opening hours because not enough people, particularly from the south of the Borough, are using the Centre. This issue was raised and denied by the Trust at the opening. The RRA would urge our residents, if they need to use the Urgent Care Centre to travel the shorter distance to Purley, rather than CUH and utilise this newly opened facility. Of course the full 24 hour A&E facility is still available at CUH.

As well as the Purley Urgent Care Centre, which is open 8am to 8pm, 7 days a week, there are also a range of diagnostic services including Digital X-Ray, DEXA, blood tests,  cardiology, Physiotherapy and ultrasound and Outpatients clinics, to name a few.

The Keston House medical practice, run by local GPs, will open on site from circa January 2014. It is also reported that Moorfields Eye Hospital, who are in discussions with the Croydon NHS Trust and will be taking over all Eye Care within Croydon, will also be utilising rooms on the 1st floor of this hospital. Although this will probably not happen until early 2014.

Although this is now a very impressive, refurbished hospital to have in the south of the Borough, perhaps the only criticism with this new hospital, is the limited on-site parking that is now available (less than before). There are 46 bays which are pay and display, although free for blue badge holders see link. Alternative nearby public parking is available in the Council’s Russell Place Car park (entrance beside Purley United Reform Church, Brighton Rd), or the multi storey car park above the swimming pool, entrance off Whytecliffe Rd South. There are limited on street pay and display parking bays in nearby streets.

The hospital is served well by buses (60, 166, 407) and from Riddlesdown the 412 do stop outside the hospital. Other bus routes which are a few minutes walk away, are the 127, 289, 405, 434 and 455. Obviously any train use from Riddlesdown, would have to be to East Croydon and then change for a southbound train to Purley Station which is a few minutes walk away from the hospital.

All in all this is an impressive transformation of a previously run down hospital by the contractor Miller HPS and we would hope Riddlesdown residents make full use of this hospital.

Below is a list of some of the services (information supplied by Croydon NHS Trust) that will be provided from Purley Hospital when it is fully open and are expected to be in place by Spring 2014:

Below are photographs from the Official opening of Purley War Memorial Hospital on 7 November 2013.

Photo Below; L to R - Richard Ottaway, MP; Croydon’s Mayor, Cllr Yvette Hopley; Croydon NHS Trust Chairman, Mike Bell; and John Goulston, Croydon NHS Trust Chief Executive.

Below:  Richard Ottaway MP performs the opening ceremony

Below; - Mayor, Cllr Yvette Hopley and Cllr Lynne Hale with John Goulston and Mike Bell

Further photos of both the outside and inside of the refurbished Purley Hospital are available to view from “The Croydon Advertiser” website. The lady in red in some of the photos, is Suzanne Joyce, Project Manager for the Croydon NHS Trust  Link

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