Wera’s stand against luxury flats at the Min.

There’s a rumour circulating that the historic Mineral Water Hospital Building in Upper Borough Walls has been ‘sold-on’ by its original purchaser.

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The Min was originally The General Hospital – founded in 1716 for the deserving poor – and designed by John Wood the Elder.

It was initially bought – in September 2017 – by Winchester-based property developer Frank Mountain – for an undisclosed sum, which is reckoned to be anywhere between 18 and 21 million pounds.

The NHS disposed of the building as a new unit for rheumatology is currently under construction at the RUH.

Mr Mountain has not answered my email but – in the meantime – Bath MP Wera Hobhouse is trying to maintain public access to the Grade 2 listed building – whoever owns it.

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Bath MP, Wera Hobhouse

She is concerned that – as the price goes up – whoever develops the site will want to see a maximum return on his or her investment. That could mean high-value luxury flats for foreign investors.

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Wera Hobhouse’s website-based petition to Save the Min.

She has been running a petition on her website to garner support for her stand  – and has also been trying to get Sam Smiths Brewery – the owners of the old King Edward’s School building in Broad Street – to get on and develop that site as the building has stood derelict for too many years.

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The old King Edward’s School in Broad Street which has been empty for years.

Bath Newseum has been talking to her.

 

I  also asked the RUH for comment as to whether – a new owner might affect their current agreement to stay at the Min – until the end of 2019.

A spokesperson for the hospital told me : ‘The Trust has an agreement in place to continue to use the building until the new premises at the RUH are completed.’