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First look inside multi-million pound transformation of former hospital

PUBLISHED: 12:23 01 March 2019 | UPDATED: 12:23 01 March 2019

Developer Malcolm Payne outside the main St Leonard's Hospital building in Newton Road, Sudbury. The main building has been converted into three town houses, as part of the re-development of the site Picture: DAVID VINCENT

Developer Malcolm Payne outside the main St Leonard's Hospital building in Newton Road, Sudbury. The main building has been converted into three town houses, as part of the re-development of the site Picture: DAVID VINCENT

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For generations St Leonard’s Hospital in Sudbury provided healthcare services for its community – now the Victorian facility has been re-born as luxury homes.

St Leonard's Hospital shut its doors to the public in 2007 Picture: ARCHANTSt Leonard's Hospital shut its doors to the public in 2007 Picture: ARCHANT

It was the town’s maternity hospital too for many years, and developer Malcolm Payne was one of the babies born on the ward in 1957.

Much of the hospital building has been retained by developers in this new multi-million pound development, which began a year ago.

Now it is complete, Mr Payne has given visitors a first glimpse inside three of the homes, which contain original features.

“My mum tells me I was born up there,” he said of the first floor of No 3, where the maternity ward once stood.

One of three townhouses created in the former St Leonard's Hospital, Sudbury by Hartog Hutton
Picture: JOHN RAMSAYOne of three townhouses created in the former St Leonard's Hospital, Sudbury by Hartog Hutton Picture: JOHN RAMSAY

In its place, there is now a double bedroom featuring panoramic views across town.

“My parents lived in Lavenham, and this hospital provided maternity services for a wide area,” he added.

Many other locals were also born at the hospital and cherish their memories of it.

St Leonard’s, in Newton Road, shut its doors to the public in 2007 – and for several years, its future was in doubt.

There was controversy about its closure and a wave of local protest – but the hospital could not be saved.

As a result, St Leonard’s had stood derelict since 2014, when hospital services were transferred to the Sudbury Health Centre.

That was until Malcolm’s development company Hartog Hutton took it on and started work on its transformation a year ago.

Developers have managed to retain the name of the hospital, in the form of new road name St Leonard’s Drive.

Mr Payne said of the final product: “We are very pleased with it. It has been a lot of work. It has been a tremendous task.

“It is good to see it all coming together.”

Agents Fenn Wright have just four homes left to sell at the site, including the three individual homes retaining parts of the main building.

Estate agent Jenny Olley said: “They are lovely homes, with lots of character and high ceilings, big windows and deep skirting boards.”

Mr Payne added: “This is a lovely location so close to the town centre, and the development has already proved popular.”

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