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North Cumbria University Hospitals NHS Trust - 70 years of the NHS

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Home > News > Fire in the energy centre at the new West Cumberland Hospital

Fire in the energy centre at the new West Cumberland Hospital

Posted on Monday 26th January 2015
wch fire

The fire damage at West Cumberland Hospital's new energy centre

North Cumbria University Hospitals NHS Trust has confirmed that a fire which broke out late on Friday evening has destroyed the energy centre in the new West Cumberland Hospital being built in Whitehaven.

No patients have been affected by the fire and all services continue to run as usual.

There will, however, be a knock on effect for the move in date of services to the new building which was planned for April this year. The fire was at 10.45pm on Friday evening and was quickly brought under control by Cumbria Fire and Rescue Service and no one was hurt or injured.

This has come as absolutely devastating news to the Trust, to staff and the new hospital project team who were gearing up for a formal handover of keys on Tuesday. It is unclear at this very early stage, how the fire broke out or how long the energy centre will take to repair. Cumbria Fire and Rescue Service will attend the site today to begin a forensic investigation.

Ann Farrar, chief executive of North Cumbria University Hospitals NHS Trust said: “This is absolutely devastating for me, the staff and the local community. We must let the investigators do their job to understand why this has happened at this time. We were all looking forward to moving into the new hospital and none of us can believe this has happened.”

Les Morgan, project director for the new West Cumberland Hospital said: "The whole team are feeling pretty distraught at this news which will also come as a shock for our staff. The whole organisation was gearing up for the big move in April and we can’t quite believe this has happened.

“It is unclear at this stage the exact circumstances surrounding the fire which will need to be formally investigated by the fire service. The people of West Cumbria can be absolutely reassured that we will work as hard as we possibly can to get things back on track as quickly as possible.”

“We'd like to stress that this has had no impact on patient care and all services continue as normal."