Hampshire & Isle of Wight

Southampton Children's Hospital meets A&E unit fund target

Jim Murray, Peter Hollins and Sarah Parish Image copyright Southampton Hospital Charity
Image caption Actors Jim Murray (left) and Sarah Parish celebrated reaching the landmark with chair of the hospital's board Peter Hollins

A campaign to help finance a £5.1m children's emergency and trauma department at University Hospital Southampton has reached its target.

The hospital said it had hit its £2m fundraising goal five months early.

The fundraising campaign for the department, based at Southampton General Hospital, started in 2016.

The appeal was given the backing of then chancellor George Osborne, who agreed to match fund the money raised to build the facility.

Campaigners had until the end of the 2018/19 financial year to unlock the allocated funds which has now been achieved.

Image copyright University Hospital Southampton
Image caption An artist's impression of the planned short stay unit at the new children's A&E department
Image copyright The Murray Parish Trust
Image caption EastEnders actress Tamzin Outhwaite (left) hosted a charity ball last weekend to help the campaign reach its target

The money was raised through the Southampton Hospital Charity and The Murray Parish Trust, which was founded by actors Sarah Parish and James Murray who lost their daughter, Ella-Jayne, to a congenital heart defect in 2009.

The further £1.1m has been allocated by University Hospital Southampton NHS Foundation Trust.

Currently, children have to be treated in the adult A&E department.

The new children's A&E, which will include a children's emergency X-ray department and a short stay unit, is expected to open at the hospital next summer.

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