Building work on a brand new £10m health centre development in Cheltenham got underway on 2 November as contractors B & K Building Services Limited moved onto the site and cut the first turf.

The new purpose-built centre on Prestbury Road will transform GP services in this part of Cheltenham, with three town centre practices which have outgrown their current premises relocating to the new premises. It will enable Berkeley Place, Crescent Bakery and Royal Crescent to provide GP services to around 25,000 patients in the town.

The new building will take around 12 months to complete, and will be built to modern, environmentally friendly, state-of-the-art specifications which include additional consulting and treatment rooms. This will enable the practices to meet growing demands and offer a broader range of services to patients, such as support from nurses, paramedics and pharmacists.

The practices will also be able to share resources and work more flexibly, offering extended opening times to patients whilst significantly more doctors, nurses and other health care professionals will be able to receive training.

Dr Phil Kurlbaum, on behalf of the three surgeries involved, said:

“We are delighted and really excited that work on our new health centre is getting underway.

Cheltenham’s population continues to grow, and the three practices’ current premises no longer meet modern healthcare standards. This new health centre will mean that we can continue to meet the ever-increasing health and care needs of our patients and provide high quality services for years to come.

We have put a lot of thought into creating an attractive building and surrounding environment which will be welcoming to all our patients and look forward to seeing the work on site progressing over the coming months.”

Director of Primary Care at NHS Gloucestershire Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG), Helen Goodey said:

“This development will be great for Cheltenham, and will mean that patients can benefit from modern, spacious facilities that support staff to provide high quality care. We are really pleased to see the start of work on site.

The new premises will be an attractive environment for GPs and other members of the practice team to work in, and for patients to visit.

The CCG is also working on a number of other surgery developments and improvements across the county.”

The new centre is likely to be named the Edward Wilson Centre in recognition of the famous Cheltenham-born doctor and Arctic explorer who died with Captain Scott in 1912.

Completion and opening of the building is scheduled for winter 2021.