Lancashire

Blackpool Council agrees a £9m loan for local hospitals

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Image caption The trust runs Blackpool Victoria Hospital, Clifton Hospital and Fleetwood Hospital

Blackpool Council has given the green light to a £9m loan for local hospitals.

The deal for Blackpool Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust's frontline services was agreed by councillors on Monday evening.

The council's executive has approved a £9.2m loan from its £100m business loans fund.

It will be paid back with interest over 10 years and will be secured against the trust's new multi-storey car park.

The loan means the trust, which operates facilities including Blackpool's main Victoria Hospital, can invest in services while benefitting from the historically low interest rates at which the council can borrow money.

'Unusual arrangement'

Leader of Blackpool Council, Simon Blackburn, described the payment as "a secured loan to an organisation that we know can repay it".

"This extra funding will allow the hospital trust to renegotiate their finances to make themselves more resilient against the challenges that the NHS will inevitably face in the future," he said.

He added: "This is an unusual arrangement but it won't be typical."

Tim Bennett, deputy chief executive of Blackpool Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, said: "This is good news for the trust and is an example of one of the areas where we are working in collaboration with our local partners to provide value for money and safe services.

"We are delighted that we are able to progress this agreement which delivers real value for money."

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