The Press and Journal (Aberdeen and Aberdeenshire)

Health: Community takeover of hospital on hold


The community takeover of an abandoned Moray hospital has been put on hold due to the coronaviru­s outbreak.

A trust has been formed to progress plans for the Leanchoil Hospital in Forres, which closed to patients in late 2018.

And Armed Forces charity Erskine had been identified as a potential tenant for the building to create a respite centre for veterans.

Unfortunat­ely talks have stalled with NHS Grampian about taking over the complex due to the health service’s current priorities, following what was an “extremely positive” start.

And yesterday, the Leanchoil Trust confirmed it had halted progress on the project to allow both the NHS and Erskine to focus on the current crisis.

A spokeswoma­n said: “The trustees have had to put the future plans for Leanchoil on hold. This is because Erskine, the major anchor tenant, has had to stop work on all future projects until the way forward can be seen.

“Erskine hope to be able to renew their firm interest in Leanchoil some time in the future.

“Erskine hope to renew their interest some time in the future”

“The Leanchoil Trust has been giving further considerat­ion to other options for the use of other parts of the site including local health and well-being services and accommodat­ion in accordance with the wishes of the local community. The trust will continue these efforts within the limitation­s of the Covid-19 situation.”

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