This is how it looks today as dismantling work at Nightingale hospital in Harrogate steps up a new gear

Cranes and major vehicles have been seen at work early this morning in Harrogate dismantling some of the biggest pieces of equipment in the NHS Nightingale Hospital.

Tuesday, 6th April 2021, 9:05 am
Updated Tuesday, 6th April 2021, 9:08 am
Heavy lifting - The giant cranes outside the Royal Hall today as dismantling of the NHS Nightingale hospital in Harrogate is stepped up a gear.

The temporary 500-bed site was set up at Harrogate Convention Centre in April last year to cope with a surge of coronavirus cases but has never been used during the pandemic.

Last month, it was announced by the NHS earlier this month that the emergency hospital would close this month and the site handed back to Harrogate Borough Council.

The removal of the Nightingale means, in theory, Harrogate Convention Centre and Royal Hall can return to normal duties hostings shows and conferences for the first time in more than a year.

Paula Lorimer, director of the council-owned convention centre, said last month she was "confident" the town's two biggest venues would be ready for events to return on June 21 when all restrictions on social distancing are due to be lifted.

The emergency hospital was one of seven built in England and although it did not treat a single coronavirus patient, it was used for non-virus diagnostic tests and outpatient appointments.

Health officials also said it was a "success" that the Harrogate site was not needed but there are questions over how it would have been staffed and Coun Jim Clark, the chairman of North Yorkshire County Council, said there were "questions to be answered" and "lessons we can learn" around the non-use of the NHS Nightingale hospital in Harrogate.

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