Haddington: Plans for 140 homes at former Herdmanflat Hospital

Haddington: Plans for 140 homes at former Herdmanflat Hospital

AS MANY as 140 new homes for older people could be created in the grounds of a former hospital.

Proposals to breathe new life into the Herdmanflat Hospital site in Haddington were unveiled by East Lothian Council last week.

As well as refurbishing the existing buildings to the north of the site, drawings highlighted that new buildings could be created on the green space further south.

No drawings of what the houses could look like were on display, with the scheme still in the early stages.

But it was revealed that “initial indications” showed the site could accommodate about 140 homes, split between existing buildings and new buildings.

During the consultation events, which took place at Haddington Primary School and the Trinity Centre, a questions and answers document was handed out to members of the pubic.

East Lothian Courier: Plans to transform the site of Herdmanflat Hospital have been revealed

The site of the former Herdmanflat Hospital

It read: “The proposals are still at a very early stage and much more work is required with partners like East Lothian Health and Social Care Partnership to understand the need and specific types and sizes of housing.

“What we do know is that because of the unique nature of the site and the type of housing for older people proposed, the density is likely to be much lower than would normally be expected on a site of this size.

“Initial indications show the site could accommodate around 140 dwellings including the conversion of the remaining listed buildings.”

Drawings included at the consultation event show housing split into four sections – the refurbishment of the existing buildings; development on the grass area in the centre of the site, with green space left in the middle; homes in an area surrounded by trees to the south; and work on the buildings at Hopetoun Mews.

Work is unlikely to begin on the site before the end of the year and it is estimated that construction work, including the refurbishment of listed buildings, could take up to four years.

A medical facility on the site dates back to the 1860s but Herdmanflat Hospital closed its doors in 2020, when services were moved to the nearby East Lothian Community Hospital, which was built on the site of the former Roodlands Hospital.

READ MOREPlans revealed for former Herdmanflat Hospital site

The Herdmanflat site, which is between Aberlady Road, the A199, Hopetoun Mews and Lydgait, stretches to more than 14.5 acres.

Large sections of the site are open grassland and council officials were keen to stress that areas would remain untouched.

They said: “Approximately 50 per cent to 60 per cent of this is likely to remain undeveloped and be retained as public open space, with walking and cycling provision.

“The site slopes down significantly from north to south and accessibility has been considered from the outset, given the proposal to build fully accessible homes for older people. These approximate figures reflect early thinking and the detail will be developed and subject to further community consultation.”

Despite the lack of images outlining the appearance of the homes, it was said that building heights were “likely to range between two and a maximum of four storeys”, with existing mature trees on the site the equivalent of four-and-a-half to five storeys tall.

Morgwn Davies, secretary and planning liaison officer with Haddington and District Community Council, was among those to have attended a consultation event.

He said: “The plans will be discussed at a future community council meeting.”

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East Lothian Courier
Cameron Ritchie

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