Plea for rethink on demolition plan at former hospital

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Conservation campaigners are urging a South Yorkshire council to rethink its plans to bulldoze an old hospital.

Rotherham Heritage Association believes other uses could be considered for the future of the town’s former Doncaster Gate Hospital, which is more than 140 years old.

Rotherham Council, which owns the building, decided to approve its demolition after its ruling cabinet members heard no organisation was interested in buying the building, despite it having been on the market.

But Eileen Hyland, secretary of the heritage association, said: “The council has claimed that the costs of repair and maintenance, and difficulty in selling, leave them no choice - but working with the community was ruled out from the outset.

“No groups came forward because no groups were informed of Rotherham Council’s plans. We urge councillors to postpone demolition while consultation can be held.”

More than 800 people have signed a petition against the demolition.

Eileen Bayliss, chairman of South Yorkshire Victorian Society, added: “It is not right for the council to do away with this building without listening to the chorus of objection.”