Almost 200 temporary props now holding up hospital roof

The Queen Elizabeth Hospital in King's Lynn, has 131 props keeping up its roof.

An example of one of the 131 props in place around the Queen Elizabeth Hospital in King's Lynn, including its kitchen and Rudham ward. - Credit: QEH

Almost 200 props are now holding up the Queen Elizabeth Hospital's roof with it being deemed a "high risk".

A meeting held by the board of directors at the QEH in King's Lynn on Tuesday, June 1 revealed 199 temporary steel props are now supporting the hospital's roof.

The QEH, which was designed to last 30 years, is operating more than 10 years past its expected working life. It needs £554m to maintain its decaying building, or £679m for a new building.


QEH in King's Lynn. - Credit: QEH

In a report published ahead of the meeting, chairman Steve Barnett said the trust has started to develop its strategic outline case to further strengthen the "compelling case" it submitted last year.

It added: "With the support of our local community, QEH is determined to continue lobbying hard to position the trust to be one of the further eight new hospitals to be built when the announcement is made later this year."

Professor Barnett told the meeting that the roof is continuing to be a very "high risk factor".

Protestors outside the QEH hospital in Kings Lynn, organised by Kings Lynn Trades Council.Byline: S

Protestors outside the QEH hospital in King's Lynn, at the demo organised by Kings Lynn Trades Council - Credit: Sonya Duncan

Chris Benham, director of finance, revealed 199 prop are now in place to hold the roof up with the latest one being installed at the end of last week, adding that the trust is carrying out a tap and test survey on the roof which will be completed in around five months.

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Louise Notley, director of patient safety, said there are currently nine significant risks on the risk register. The roof is listed as one of them.

A report on the risks noted that no changes to the risk grading were proposed for the roof and that there still remains "a direct risk to life and patients, visitors and staff due to the potential of catastrophic failure of the roof structure due to structural deficiencies."

Chief executive Caroline Shaw said a fail safe project will see lots of construction work taking place at the QEH site with movement of services, adding the trust had to get it "absolutely right" for its patients, staff and community.

The Queen Elizabeth Hospital in Kings LynnThe Chief Executive of the QEH Caroline Shaw

The results have been welcomed by Queen Elizabeth Hospital chief executive Caroline Shaw - Credit: Sonya Duncan

More than 7,100 people have signed the EDP's petition calling for the new build.

To sign the petition visit

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