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New accommodation and teaching block at the Tunbridge Wells Hospital

The Council’s Planning Committee has unanimously approved a planning application for accommodation and teaching space for medical students at the Tunbridge Wells Hospital.

Tunbridge Wells Borough Council’s Planning team ensured the application was processed and determined as quickly as possible and within the statutory time period in order for the NHS to meet their objective for the development to be fully operational by the end of March 2022.

Committee members gave the go ahead for the development of 145 bedroom purpose-built student accommodation and an academic learning hub large enough to accommodate approximately 40 students.

The approval will help meet a government objective to train more doctors and increase the number of qualified medical professionals in areas that are experiencing the greatest recruitment challenges. The high quality of the scheme is designed to attract medical students to the hospital where they will be able to live, work and learn on site.

Cabinet Leader Tom Dawlings said: ‘If nothing else the past year or so has reminded us of the vital role the NHS plays in our lives. This development is important as it will have a long-term positive impact on staffing in the NHS and I welcome the Committee’s decision.’

The scheme is designed to be car free and proposes bicycle storage for 74 bikes and includes provision to improve biodiversity and provide a sustainable and energy efficient building. Air source heat pumps, natural ventilation and heat recovery, LED lighting and solar panels will all contribute to the energy efficiency.

More information about the scheme can be seen on the Maidstone and Tunbridge Wells NHS Trust website.

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