New Papworth Hospital reaches highest point

28 October 2016

Papworth NHS Foundation Trust staff celebrated reaching the highest point (topping out) of the building of their new hospital on the Cambridge Biomedical Campus today.

The new building, which will be reaching its highest point of 29 metres this Friday, will be home to a state-of-the-art 310-bed cardiothoracic hospital, which will be built to the very highest international medical standards.

The new hospital will replace the current facility when it is completed in spring 2018, welcoming patients from across the East of England and the UK.

In line with the hospital's ethos, where patients are encouraged to maintain links with the outside world to aid recovery, all bedrooms will offer outside views thanks to an innovative design. The iconic pond at the current site will also be replicated as part of the landscaping for the new hospital.

New Papworth Hospital will be part of the newly forming Cambridge Biomedical Campus, which will also include Cambridge University Hospitals and the Global Research and Development Centre and Corporate Headquarters of AstraZeneca.

Claire Tripp, interim Chief Executive for Papworth NHS Foundation Trust, and member of the topping out team, said: "I am looking forward to the day when we start to welcome patients and our staff to the new hospital. This facility will offer a fantastic environment for our patients and staff. The location on the Cambridge Biomedical Campus is fantastic setting and will provide our staff with excellent opportunities for additional training and development."

Professor John Wallwork, Chairman of Papworth NHS Foundation Trust, commented: "The new hospital will offer facilities which will be second to none, which will enhance the patient experience and help us to attract and retain the very best clinical expertise."

Heidi Allen MP, who also took part in the topping out activities, said: "This is an exciting moment for the Cambridge Biomedical Campus  as we are near the day when we will welcome this world class hospital to their new home. It is almost impossible to imagine that the area's world leading reputation as a centre of excellence for healthcare and research could be further enhanced, but the arrival of Papworth will undoubtedly cement that global position."

Skanska Managing Director, Terry Elphick, said: "We are delivering this large project on time and on budget. We enjoy an excellent, collaborative relationship with our customer, which is both positive and productive. We are working with local suppliers and employing local people which also benefits the community and local economy."

The topping out event was celebrated by a final ceremonial laying of cement, followed by a traditional Scandinavian 'flying of the fir' – when a spruce tree was flown over the building by tower crane.