Dear Mr Johnson and Mr Hancock,

Your promise to deliver six large new hospitals by 2025 will be in tatters should West Herts Hospital Trust and Herts Valleys Clinical Commissioning Group continue in their mission to deliver a partially redeveloped Watford General Hospital. This will not be the new large hospital that you promised the country, and in particular, the people of West Herts.

West Herts Hospital Trust and its partners may well be assessing several new locations for a new hospital as part of their Outline Business Case but does anyone really believe that they have any desire or ambition to deliver a completely new ‘state of the art’ A&E hospital?

The dilapidated Watford General Hospital site needs to be vacated and levelled to achieve anything like a new hospital but of course it has to remain operational whilst any major reconstruction takes place. Then of course the site has listed buildings on it.

The often congested Vicarage Road site is also on a steep, steep slope right next door to Watford Football Club. The site is too small to contemplate building a completely new hospital on whilst maintaining normal hospital services and of course Kier are currently building flats all around it as part of the Riverwell redevelopment.

What are the implications for major building works on hospital sites should Covid-19 still be a major concern over the next 2-5 years.

Only by your personal intervention will the trust understand that when you say that you will build six new large hospitals, that you will take nothing less!

Good luck persuading the chairmen of HVCCG and WHHT, Dr Nicholas Small and Mr Townsend along with their boards’ members, that you really did mean a new large hospital and nothing inferior like a long-winded and potentially risky partial redevelopment of Watford General.

Andrew Love

St Albans