Celebrating 15 years of progress: A landmark day for East Riding Community Hospital

Fifteen years ago, on this very day, 20 January, a historic agreement unfolded that would shape the landscape of healthcare in Beverley.

Pete Beckwith and Andy Barber

The deal involved the sale of the land for what would become the cornerstone of health services in the region – Beverley’s new Community Hospital on Swinemoor Lane.

Captured in a photograph from 20 January 2009 (below), Karen Knapton, then Chair of the NHS East Riding of Yorkshire, and Councillor Eric Bielby, Former Chairman of Beverley Consolidated Charity Board of Trustees (now Beverley Housing Charity), stand proudly at the site that would become the much-needed local healthcare facility.

Transporting us back to the Middle Ages, a time where traditions and symbolic gestures held great significance, it was customary for the seller to present a piece of turf or wood to the purchaser upon the sale of the land. Drawing parallels from this historical practice, Eric Bielby marked the occasion by presenting symbolic coins to Karen Knapton, a gesture rich in history and tradition.

Andy Barber, Chief Executive at Beverley Housing Charity, said: “What a difference the community hospital has made to all residents of Beverley and the surrounding area over the last fifteen years. As an effective extension of primary care and medical support, local people have gained access to rehabilitation, palliative care, intermediate care and surgical care, as well as emergency and maternity facilities.

“This stands as a testament to the transformative impact of the land once owned by Beverley Housing Charity (formerly Beverley Consolidated Charity). As we commemorate this anniversary, we look forward to unveiling more examples of positive change that have emerged from our foundations.

“Funds raised from the sale of the land enabled the charity to invest in further development to create more homes in the centre of Beverley, which have gone on to improve health and wellbeing for local people. 

“Indeed, the Community Hospital has become a beacon of progress, offering vital healthcare services to the community. The foresight of the agreement made fifteen years ago has rippled through time, leaving a lasting legacy of improved health and wellbeing for Beverley and its residents.

Pete Beckwith, NHS Trust Director of Finance, said: “For the last fifteen years the East Riding Community Hospital has provided our local community with a variety of services and care. As a local resident myself I have seen first hand the benefits presented by the hospital to our community. I am delighted to attend the hospital on behalf of the Trust to celebrate the services delivered for the last fifteen years.”