“Deteriorating” Midland Hospital opening could be delayed by another two years

Midland Metropolitan Hospital.

Hospital bosses have sparked fears that the completion date for the Midland Metropolitan Hospital could be pushed back by a further two years to 2022.

Construction on the site has halted following the collapse of industry giant Carillion, meaning the hospital remains two-thirds complete. The Sandwell and West Birmingham NHS Trust hospital was due to be finished originally in October 2018 but that was pushed back to spring 2019 after M&E design issues were identified.

The trust’s chief executive Toby Lewis has warned that the hospital site is “deteriorating” and rework costs could be “significant” while work remains stagnant. Lewis has also revealed the trust predicted it will cost between £100m and £125m more than had originally been anticipated to finish the project.

In a report to board members, he added: "After many weeks of intensive work, clarity and certainty continues to elude us all. What is apparent is that the site is deteriorating now and that rework costs will therefore be significant. We continue to press for an early restart and therefore the most rapid route to a single acute hospital, which in our view could be achieved by 2020. Some options being considered make a 2022 opening date more likely, with certainty not achieved until early next year owing to chosen procurement routes in an uncertain supplier market."

The latest announcement comes just weeks after West Midlands mayor Andy Street called on the government to act swiftly in a bid to restart the construction of the hospital in Smethwick which has been on hold since the start of the year.

In a letter to the cabinet, the mayor also urged the government to support Skanska to complete the construction after Sandwell and West Birmingham Hospitals Trust identified the firm as its preferred option moving forward.

In his letter, Street said: “The hospital company, which is leading the project under a PF2 contract, has successfully identified a preferred replacement contractor, Skanska, to start an early works contract which will help avoid further delays to the project. I acknowledge there are other alternatives, which may be preferred, for example a wholesale re-procurement of the PF2 contract, or self-delivery under another form by the trust.”

If you would like to contact Ryan Tute about this, or any other story, please email