The key dates in the Cromer Hospital saga

April 1997 – Feasibility study into building a new hospital at Cromer, with a decision due in the autumn.

June 1998 – Study is in favour of new hospital, but a health watchdog committee urged chiefs to 'get on with it' after the project had lived in the shadow of the N&N rebuild.

April 1999 – Hospital friends are told work could start in 2000 and be finished in 2002, costing �5m to �8m.

July 2000 – Local millionairess Sagle Bernstein, 82, leaves �11m to the hospital as a thank you for caring for her dying sister.

February 2001 – Health chiefs draw up specifications for redeveloping the hospital – the third business case in the last six years. North Norfolk MP David Prior pledges to raise the matter in parliament.

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April 2001 – Target date of December 2003 set for the new hospital, with a decision soon on whether it would be a new site or rebuild.

October 2001 – The new hospital will not be open until 2004 or 2005, health chiefs told an angry public meeting.

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November 2002 – Collapse of stock market investments slices up to �2m off the Bernstein legacy. Four years later, officials said �3m worth of income had made the legacy bigger than when it started.

September 2003 – A decision day on the rebuild, due for opening in 2006-7, is delayed until November by the regional health authority because of concerns about the impact Cromer outpatient clinics would have elsewhere.

October 2003 – The latest �15m plans cause concern because of the lack of overnight beds.

March 2004 – Phyllis Cox of Bacton leaves what eventually becomes �1.5m to Cromer Hospital because of the care she received there.

May 2004 – Health chiefs aim to scale down the number of outpatients at the new hospital, now a �17m project.

February 2005 – A new �25m scheme is tabled, with �4m of the Bernstein legacy likely to be put towards building it and another �4m for equipment.

October 2005 – A range of sites is narrow down to two, on Holt Road and Norwich Road, but negotiations with landowners stalled, turning the spotlight on the football ground opposite and rebuilding the existing site as a fallback.

October 2006 – Consultations are announced on a rebuild on Mill Road, at half the cost.

March 2007 – A �13m scheme is backed by the NNUH board with work due to start in October.

May 2007 – Preservationists ask to have parts of the existing 1930s hospital listed – but the move is thrown out the following July.

July 2008 – A major rethink sees the Cromer scheme upped to �26m, to be opened by spring 2011.

February 2009 – Bat droppings found in the roofspace of the current hospital spark a survey - and another delay.

March 2009 – Planning officials call for a better 'landmark' design, leading to the decision being deferred.

June 2009 – A slim down of the scheme is announced from �25m to �15m because health chiefs fear future public spending cuts.

May 2010 – Planning permission is granted, with work due to start in September and be finished by autumn 2012

March 2012 - The hospital is set to welcome its first patients.

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