Plans to build a new A&E department at Huddersfield Royal Infirmary have been shown to councillors.

Members of Kirklees Council’s Strategic Planning Committee have had an early sight of the plans before a formal planning application is submitted.

The new A&E is on a corner of the Lindley hospital site currently occupied by under-used staff accommodation – known as Savile Court – and a car park in South Drive.

The new building, which is described as “reasonably modest” in size will include 19 treatment bays with four resuscitation bays and two X-ray rooms.

Access for emergency ambulances is via Acre Street and the existing South Drive, which runs through the middle of the proposed site, will be diverted around the new building. There will also be a linked corridor to the main hospital.

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The plans would see around 96 car parking spaces lost but, the meeting was told, this would impact mainly on staff who would be told to park across the road at Acre Mills.

Some trees will also have to be lost to the development, though none are protected by tree preservation orders.

Councillors on the committee asked about public consultation and were told that the nearest 1,000 homes had received a mailshot.

Clr Andrew Pinnock (Lib Dem, Cleckheaton) asked about how the loss of Savile Court, previously accommodation for nursing staff, would impact the hospital.

He was told that the building was “not fully utilised” but did have “some rest areas for doctors.”

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Clr Donna Bellamy (Con, Colne Valley) welcomed plans for improvement and added: “The A&E does need improvement. It’s awful at the moment.

“I do have some issues with parking. Acre Mills has been mentioned but crossing that road is horrendous. You take your life in your hands.”