£4m project is turning former St Leonards Hospital in Sudbury into luxury flats and cottages
- Credit: Archant
A Victorian hospital building will be retained by developers as they convert the former Sudbury landmark into 12 news flats and houses.
St Leonards Hospital, to the east of Sudbury town centre, between Newton Road and Burroughs Piece Road, first opened in 1867 and served the community for more than 100 years, offering accident and emergency facilities, X-ray services and maternity wards.
At one time it was thought all the buildings would be demolished but now developers Hartog Hutton have acquired the site and work has started on a £4m project to deliver an attractive scheme of 12 high-quality homes for the town.
At just under half a hectare, this site will be sympathetically developed to provide a large one-bedroom flat, two two-bedroom detached cottages, six three-bedroom houses and three four-bedroom homes, they say.
Most importantly, the main building will be saved and converted to create some of the new properties.
Malcolm Payne, of the developers, said: “When we bought it there were still hospital signs up, most of the equipment had gone but there were a few old beds.
“It is a lovely old building. We will try and keep as many original features as we can, subject to building regulations.”
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He thinks the homes will be popular do to their central location.
“People want to live in town centres again. We have found that in Bury St Edmunds.”
Malcolm has a personal reason for wanting this scheme to be a success - he was born in the hospital in 1957.
“My parents lived in Lavenham,” he said, “And this hospital provided maternity services for a wide area.
“A lot of people were born here. I was at a corporate event the other day, the opening of the new Fenn Wright estate agents office, and four people came up to me and said they had been born here.
“It was the main hospital for Sudbury, and we are saving the building for future generations.”
There was controversy about the closure of the hospital and a wave of local protest but the hospital could not be saved and St Leonards has been derelict since 2014 when hospital services were transferred to the Sudbury Health Centre.
Although the main building will be cleaned and retained, outbuildings and other ancillary buildings will be cleared to make way for the development.
“This is a fantastic opportunity to transform a brownfield site into a lovely collection of homes,” added George Wells, co-director of Hartog Hutton. “As a niche residential developer we are excited to have the added interest of the original Victorian building to incorporate into our scheme. It will create a community that people will be proud to be a part of.”
The anticipated completion date of the project is autumn 2018 and the agents will be Fenn Wright in Sudbury - 01787 327000.