Pictures have revealed what a new village in South London will look like after it was dubbed the ‘largest urban development’ to open in the capital since the Olympic Games in 2012.
Springfield Village, in Tooting, will officially open to the public on July 5 as part of national celebrations to mark 75 years of the NHS, after a hospital site was revamped, with hundreds of homes set to be built in the next three years.
The £150million revamp of Springfield University Hospital, with two new mental health facilities, is at the centre of the scheme from South West London and St George’s Mental Health NHS Trust.
The Trinity building opened to patients in December 2022, with Shaftesbury set to open later this year.
The village will also include a new 32-acre park, shops, cafés, a care home, land for a school and more than 800 homes by 2026.
The park is opening to the public in two stages and will include a pavilion café, amphitheatre, youth shelter, play areas and a sensory garden. The biggest part of the park will open this summer, with the remaining area scheduled to open in autumn next year.
Some new homes have already been built in the village, with a total of 839 approved and works planned up to 2026. Plans for 449 more homes to be built on remaining plots of land are being considered by Wandsworth Council and would take the total up to 1,288 if approved.
The trust said the village is the “largest urban development in London since the 2012 Olympics and has been designed in collaboration with staff, patients and local people over a number of years to break down barriers and open up the Springfield site for the benefit of the community”.
The overall scheme is being led by developer STEP with the trust and other partners including Barratt London, London Square, Sir Robert McAlpine, Lawrence Baker and City & Country. It forms part of the trust’s aim to transform mental health services in South West London, including the planned revamp of Tolworth Hospital in Kingston and Barnes Hospital in Richmond.
Leaders from six national mental health charities visited Springfield Village on May 16 to mark Mental Health Awareness Week 2023.
Vanessa Ford, chief executive of the trust, said: “We are extremely proud of everything we have achieved with our partners in creating Springfield Village. Bringing our services closer to the people we serve symbolises just how far we have come as a society in changing attitudes and breaking the enduring stigma around mental illness.
“That is in large part thanks to the dedicated campaigning and advocacy work of these fantastic organisations over a number of years. We still have a way to go and it is so important we work across organisational and societal boundaries to build on this momentum.
“Springfield is just the start of our journey to transform local mental health services. We are excited to bring forward further investments this year, as we enhance and expand community mental health services and redevelop Barnes and Tolworth Hospitals.”
Mark Winstanley, chief executive of charity Rethink Mental Illness, added: “People who need mental health inpatient treatment have traditionally been isolated from the local community in outdated hospitals which aren’t designed to meet their needs. Springfield Village has been built with the input of people experiencing severe mental illness and has the potential to break the mould.
“It’s also really encouraging to see plans to integrate the hospital into the local community, which will help efforts to break down stigma that still has a tangible impact on people’s lives.
“We welcome the investment and careful consideration that has gone into ensuring people feel as comfortable and safe as possible during their treatment, and we await feedback from people who use this service as it could provide a blueprint for other plans in development across the country.”