Trust Selects Laing O'rourke For Work On Proposed Cancer Hospital


The Clatterbridge Cancer Centre NHS Foundation Trust has selected Laing O’Rourke to work with it on business cases and design-and-build for a major new cancer hospital in the heart of Liverpool.

The Trust, which provides the specialist cancer service for Merseyside and Cheshire as well as carrying out ground-breaking research, plans to expand its services with a new hospital on the same site as the Royal Liverpool University Hospital and the University of Liverpool.

The plans were unanimously approved in December by the Joint Health Scrutiny Committee for Cheshire and Merseyside, which represented the eight local authorities whose residents would be substantially affected by the proposed changes to cancer care.

They also received outstanding support in the three-month-long Transforming Cancer Care public consultation from July to October 2014, with 91% of those who took part saying they supported the Trust’s vision and 87% saying they believed the proposals would improve cancer care.

That means the new hospital in Liverpool – and an associated redesign of The Clatterbridge Cancer Centre’s Wirral site, which would be retained and continue providing cancer care – should go ahead subject to the approval of an outline business case this summer and a full business case in 2016.

Laing O’Rourke will provide construction and other technical expertise that is vital in developing this outline business case. They will also work closely with staff from The Clatterbridge Cancer Centre, patient representatives and the architects BDP to begin the detailed design process.

The project includes the redesign of the Trust’s existing Wirral site, as well as designs for the new hospital in Liverpool. If the project receives full business case approval, Laing O’Rourke would also build the new hospital in Liverpool.

The agreement with Laing O’Rourke – which followed a formal tender issued in May 2014 – is on a staged basis which provides flexibility while also ensuring good value for taxpayers. It means the NHS is not tied into an ongoing contract if at any stage the project does not go ahead. The project is largely being funded by NHS and government sources, with some money also planned to come from a public fundraising appeal, so is not funded by PFI.

Andrew Cannell, Chief Executive of The Clatterbridge Cancer Centre, said: “We are delighted to be working with Laing O’Rourke on the next phase of this very exciting development, subject to business case approvals. Getting the design right will be one of the most important factors in its success and the input of our staff and patient representatives working with Laing O’Rourke and the architects will be invaluable in this. We are also committed to maximising the wider community benefits of a project of this scale.”

Tom Higgins, Laing O’Rourke Director, said: “This is a very exciting project for us and the confidence The Clatterbridge Cancer Centre NHS Foundation Trust has in us is testament to our expertise in the health sector. The immediate priority is to now work closely with the architects and Clatterbridge Cancer Centre staff as well as patient groups to finalise the project’s design.”


Transforming Cancer Care is a £118m investment in improving cancer care to:

  1. Expand the services provided by The Clatterbridge Cancer Centre to meet the increasing demand for specialist cancer care as the population ages, and diagnosis and treatments improve.
  2. Develop a new Clatterbridge Cancer Centre in the heart of Liverpool, alongside Royal Liverpool University Hospital, the University of Liverpool and Cancer Research UK’s Liverpool Cancer Trials Unit. This would become The Clatterbridge Cancer Centre’s main site.
  3. Continue to provide outpatient treatment for most cancer at The Clatterbridge Cancer Centre in Wirral and its second radiotherapy unit at Aintree. Its chemotherapy clinics and outpatient clinics at local hospitals across Merseyside and Cheshire would also continue. The Wirral site would be redeveloped so patients continued to benefit from high-quality facilities.

The new hospital in Liverpool would...

  • Have on-site access to the intensive care, medical and surgical specialties in the Royal Liverpool University Hospital.
  • Increase capacity and choice by offering radiotherapy at three sites rather than two and expanding The Clatterbridge Cancer Centre to meet increasing demand for specialist cancer care.
  • Provide services at a central location that’s closer to home for the majority of patients and has excellent public transport links.
  • Be on the same health campus as the University of Liverpool, Royal Liverpool University Hospital, Cancer Research UK’s Liverpool Cancer Trials Unit and other key research partners.
  • Be a hub for a much wider range of world-class cancer research and clinical trials, enabling people in Merseyside and Cheshire to benefit from the latest and most advanced forms of cancer treatment.

Proposed timescales (subject to approval of business cases)

  • Develop outline business case: Autumn 2014 to summer 2015
  • Decision on outline business case: Summer 2015
  • Full business case: Summer 2016
  • Construction of new hospital in Liverpool begins: Summer 2016
  • New hospital in Liverpool opens: Autumn 2018
  • Redesign of Wirral site: Autumn 2018-2019