Pledge to slow Portsmouth homes plan on hospital land

Donna Jones
Donna Jones

Portsmouth MP flies out to storm-hit islands on first trip as development secretary

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THE minister for Portsmouth has pledged to help slow down plans to develop a hospital site into homes.

Matthew Hancock is to put pressure on health ministers to see if they can stop NHS Property Services Ltd pushing ahead with selling off the land around St James’ Hospital in Portsmouth for housing before action is taken first.

Cllr Donna Jones, Tory leader of Portsmouth City Council, asked the minister for his help as she wants time to create a masterplan for the Milton site that ensures anything that goes there is sustainable.

The strategy would put restrictions on developers, ensuring further pressure is not put on the already struggling road and sewage network.

Care and support minister Norman Lamb is also seeing if the NHS can keep some healthcare at the hospital.

Mr Hancock recently apologised after his office thought an enquiry about the Milton homes referred to Milton Keynes.

Cllr Jones said: ‘I have asked the minister for help and he said he would get involved.

‘I have real concerns about how the roads and sewage network would cope and the fact there would be a lack of school places.’