WORK on building the new Royal Liverpool hospital will not begin until next July at the earliest.
The new date was revealed by Health Minister Dan Poulter when he met yesterday with Liverpool MPs Louise Ellman, Luciana Berger, Steve Rotheram and Maria Eagle to discuss the rebuilding of the hospital.
It was initially hoped work on the £450m rebuild would start next spring, with a completion date scheduled for the end of 2016. The new timescale means it is now unlikely the new hospital will be ready before 2017.
The delay is blamed on continuing scrutiny of the finances and affordability of the new build.
Ms Ellman said: “I am pleased that the Minister promised to take a personal interest in rebuilding the Royal.
“He hopes a start could be made in July subject to the successful outcome of ongoing assessments. We will be meeting him again in January to review progress”.
She added: “The rebuilding of the Royal is vital to health provision in the city and essential for the regeneration of Liverpool.
“The biomedical centre, built on the same site, will be a focus for thousands of new jobs and will strengthen Liverpool’s reputation as a global hub for science”.