Samaritan Hospital for Women – whats going on?

Its almost 20 years now since the Samaritan Hospital for Women was closed on the Marylebone Road  and you have to ask what the hell is going on?

In 1948 the Hospital joined the NHS, becoming affiliated to St Mary’s Hospital. It was renamed the Samaritan Hospital for Women. In 1982 it had 79 beds and in 1987 the Hospital building was listed by English Heritage as Grade II. The Hospital closed in 1997. 

So how and who manages these surplus NHS assets? The present disposal of NHS assets is undertaken by NHS Property Services – a limited company, set up in April 2013, wholly owned by the Secretary of State for Health to manage, maintain and improve NHS properties and facilities within their portfolio, working in partnership with NHS organisations.

One key part of the company’s role is the efficient management and disposal of properties which are no longer required by the NHS for the delivery of services, ensuring that best value is achieved from any disposal, for reinvestment in the NHS. The decision as to whether properties are surplus to NHS operational requirements resides with commissioners, i.e. NHS England or a clinical commissioning group (CCG). A property will only be released for disposal by NHS Property Services once commissioners have confirmed that it is no longer required for the delivery of NHS services.

NHS Property Services ensures that market value is achieved in the sale of assets through an arm’s length, open market process. Any property to be disposed of is first listed on the Electronic Property Information Mapping Service (ePIMS) website, which allows other public sector bodies to purchase it. Properties are listed on this website for forty working days and if no other public sector organisation expresses an interest then it can be marketed locally NHS Property Services have a vital role as stewards of NHS assets and publish information on disposals as a matter of course.

Whilst at the London Assembly, l did ask NHS England what is happening with the grand building on the Marylebone Road? Please see the response below – quite clearly its owned along with the adjacent Western Eye Hospital by Imperial College Healthcare NHS Trust and earmarked for off-setting redevelopment costs on other major sites. 

But does it really take 20 years to sort it out with these buildings which could have been put to good alternative use in the meantime rather than lying empty for so long. Its been so long that developments in Paddington near to St Mary’s Hospital are now being developed like the Cube on the old post office site which would not have been anticipated to make a substantial contribution to the funds of Imperial for redevelopment. This potential makes available the resources released for this site on the running costs of NHS locally in City of Westminster and West Central during the present winter crisis.

During all those 20 years as well, no proposed scheme has been submitted through planning at City of Westminster. Other publicly owned sites like the Westminster Magistrate Court site in the next block along Marylebone Road have been fully developed as a new home for the Courts in Central London and residential scheme. 

Now thats a thought that could focus the minds of the property managers of the NHS after 20 years of doing nothing much on the site and a winter crisis begging for more resources for our social care. What ever options are pursued eventually, this grand old building is probably worth 10’s of millions, a princely sum no one could have imagined in the middle of the 19th century. 





15 thoughts on “Samaritan Hospital for Women – whats going on?

  1. gene greene

    lovely building, why can’t it be re-developed into affordable housing association homes, such as by, the guinness trust? then someone like (myself0 could possibly have a chance of living there.

      1. Sue monks

        I am so sorry to see this neglect what an amazing building with a great history

      2. Claire

        When VAW (Voluntary Action Westminster) had its offices close by its director Bernard Collier raised a question of the Hospital’s future and a possible use of the empty rooms. An interview with him appeared in the Westminster Reporter or, I believe, it was called the West End Extra at the time, perhaps over 10yrs now. It is a great shame nothing has still been done!

  2. gene greene

    on second ideas, as the building looks so grand, perhaps it should go to those who belong in more upper class environments, for now, (I) wouldn’t know if this should be through the guinness trust, perhaps the other lovely building in (whitechapel), an old art-deco block,which would be a ‘crime’, if this is demolished, located to the left side of the, royal london hospital, would be more suitable for someone like (myself), should this become rescue-able, by the guinness trust, and has a lift, as in a predominant, different ethnicity place, a top floor would be the most desirable position, to live.

  3. Anna

    Thanks for the information about who owns the building and what they plan to do with it. I was wondering if it could temporarily be used to provide low cost counseling services – there are lots of therapy students and placement organisations that link them to clients, and a maybe need for these services with the current mental health crisis, but it’s hard to find venues to work from. I guess I’d need to contact the NHS property services directly, but just wondering if you think they might be open to this, or if you’d have any influence?

  4. Dave

    Can anyone actually verify that the hospital does belong to Imperial College Healthcare NHS Trust? I’ve heard that it’s leased from a charity). The Trust, therefore, has to pay for its upkeep but doesn’t receive any funding for it and can’t sell it.

    1. Murad Post author

      I had written to London NHS in previous term and it was not disputed that Imperial NHS owned it.

  5. Leigh

    I worked in the Samaritan Hospital for two years from 1994 to 1996 as a nurse on one of the gynaecological wards there. It was an old, somewhat neglected building even then. I remember whacking cockroaches with my shoe on one shift, before pest control was called in. We used to have to take patients up to the top floor to theatre in a very old lift, which occasionally broke down. I imagine all the theatre equipment is up there because it would have been too much effort to remove it.
    I enjoyed working there, and sometimes wonder if it would be possible to have a look around it to see it as it is now.

  6. Miquel Brown

    I am interested in purchasing the building, who would i contact to do such ? I have a project in mind for the building and just need the keys. Please advise or give me the correct contact details. Thank you

  7. Sara Cox

    I worked here as a newly qualified nurse from Dec 1983- March 1985.
    Lovely hospital so sad to see this building empty.
    Queens Gynacologist Mr Pinker was one of the consultants.

  8. A Rees

    Scaffold up in the fro t of the building g so perhaps Gia LLC something is being Dow. To preserve it

    1. Murad Post author

      Yip l had noticed the scaffolding as well when cycling past – its quite heavy duty as well


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