A 2015 review into the condition and use of NHS hospitals across Southampton found some facilities could be better used. These included both the Western Community Hospital, owned by Solent NHS Trust, and the Royal South Hants, owned by NHS Property Services.

With too few rehabilitation beds in Southampton to meet future health requirements, a plan was developed to demolish a single-storey ward that was being used as office space at the Western. It would be replaced by a modern, purpose-built unit to house rehabilitation services in Southampton, allowing for more beds and for care to be centralised, rather than run across the two separate sites, as is it now.

Clinical staff, patients and carers have had considerable input into plans for the £21.8m new unit, which should also help reduce admissions to University Hospital Southampton and free up vital space at the Royal South Hants – providing huge benefits for the wider health system as well as the local community.

  • August 2020 – public consultation.
  • September 2021 – Southampton City Council granted planning permission.
  • September 2022 – the Department of Health and Social Care and NHD England give approval.
  • November 2022 – demolition starts on site.
  • June 2023 – phase one (demolition and groundworks) is finished and phase two (building structure) begins.
  • August 2023 – topping out ceremony to mark the end of phase two and the start of phase three (external walls and fitting).

The building is due to open in summer 2024.