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Some of the most historically important buildings on NHS hospital sites that are redundant, or likely to become redundant in the future, have been protected by listing, Heritage Minister Tony Banks announced today.

Following recommendations from English Heritage, 33 buildings and structures at 18 NHS hospital sites in the North, Midlands and East Anglia have been added to the list of buildings of special architectural or historic interest.

Tony Banks said:

"With the changing demands of health provision over the years, it is inevitable that some hospital buildings are no longer appropriate for their original use. By listing the finest examples, we are ensuring that the changes necessary to bring them back into active use will be carried out in a manner that is sympathetic to their heritage value. I congratulate the Department of Health on its enlightened attitude in recognising this value, and in co-operating fully in the process leading to these listings."

The listings announced today are the first of two batches. The second batch will cover hospital sites in London, the South and South West. The buildings have been singled out for protection following an extensive study by English Heritage. The study, funded jointly by English Heritage and the Department of Health's NHS Estates Agency, has looked at around 400 NHS hospital sites. Its aims were to identify buildings that are worthy of listing and to clarify the list entries of hospitals already listed. Recommendations to de-list were also made where appropriate.

The buildings listed today provide fascinating insights into the history of hospital care in Britain. The Sanatorium at Killingbeck Hospital in Leeds was one of 29 isolation hospitals built by local authorities between 1930 and 1948 for the treatment of tuberculosis. Like many of the others, it was designed in the International Modern Style, which took full advantage of modern construction methods to allow maximum light and air for the treatment of patients. The treatment of tuberculosis by antibiotics from the late 1940s meant that most of these sanatoriums were altered and converted to other uses, so this well preserved example is a rare survival.

Towers Hospital in Leicester was the original Leicester Borough Asylum, designed in 1869-70 by E Stephens (Borough Surveyor) and built by Osborne Bros. One of the best preserved and most impressive mid-Victorian asylums, it is dominated by the three-storey central block with a square taller, domed tower and long gabled side wings with pronounced end pavilions and square staircase towers. At the rear of the central block is a simple Gothic Revival style chapel.

The Winter Garden at Pastures Hospital, Burnaston is an impressive glasshouse built in the late Victorian period to provide flowering plants for the asylum wards as well as therapeutic employment for the patients. It is one of the best preserved examples of a hospital conservatory with its own heating system.

SOURCE Department for Culture, Media and Sport

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