Developer’s plans for Haslar site set to be revealed

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PLANS to redevelop Gosport’s Royal Haslar Hospital are nearing completion, The News can reveal.

Developer Our Enterprise is busy putting together its master plan for the site which it hopes to submit to Gosport Borough Council’s planning board next month.

The man in charge of the company has told The News medical, care and retirement facilities are included in the plans.

There will also be affordable housing, commercial uses and care facilities for veterans and young veterans.

Our Enterprise says it hopes to start work on the first phase of the development next year.

The founder of the company, Matthew Bell, said: ‘We are moving forward.

‘The scheme’s objectives have not changed from when we acquired the site.

‘I believe Royal Haslar will be one of the most desirable places to live on the south coast, with significant potential to create jobs and regeneration for the people of Gosport.’

The Ministry of Defence sold the site to Our Enterprise in November 2009.

The land was once valued at £55m but was sold to the developers for just £3m.

Mr Bell said the company has since been carrying out surveys and reports in preparation for its planning application.

The target for the submission of the developers’ outline application is in the middle of November.

Gosport councillor Peter Edgar, who has been a leading Haslar campaigner, said: ‘It is very unfortunate that the sale of this site came at the start of a recession.

‘I’m sure things have been made extremely difficult for Our Enterprise.

‘We have made it clear the site is for health and community use and I don’t believe the council will ever divert from that.

‘There is a great opportunity there now because the number of people suffering from stress has increased tremendously after being involved in wars so there is a definite need for that.

‘We must have complete confidence that it won’t turn into an application for homes and nothing else.

‘It’s very important that the site is for health and community use.’

The Royal Hospital Haslar had provided medical care for the armed forces and people in Gosport for 253 years when it closed.