Restoration and redevelopment of the Cambridge Military Hospital - Aldershot, Surrey
Case study

Restoration and redevelopment of the Cambridge Military Hospital - Aldershot, Surrey

During September and October 2015 we have been working on the planning submission for Zone C of the 3850 dwelling Wellesley project for Grainger Plc, which is the restoration and redevelopment of the historic Cambridge Military Hospital and the Louise Margaret Hospital next door.

Transport Planning
Infrastructure Design
Environmental Assessment



The Cambridge Military Hospital dates from the 1870’s and was operation from 1897 until 1996, with the Louise Margaret Hospital next door (opened 1898) to care for the wives and children of servicemen. It was the first hospital in the UK to receive casualties from the Western front during the 1st World War and was also the first place plastic surgery was undertaken in Britain, with a ‘Plastic Unit’ opening in the hospital in 1915 which treated casualties with facial injuries from the Battle of the Somme. The hospital later opened to civilians as well but was closed in 1996 partly due to the discovery of asbestos in the buildings.

The building itself is being converted into 75 dwellings, a mixture of flats and terraced housing which will be available to rent, managed by Grainger Plc, as well as a residents gym and potential for a café or restaurant and a small museum.


As part of the Wellesley development the building has been striped back to its original Victorian structure with all later structural addition removed, the asbestos has been removed from the interior (a much larger job than first thought) and the exterior will be restored.

The Aldershot team has been involved in the horizontal and vertical design of the roads around the building including the access ring road to the rear of the building, the parking courts and the diversion of Hospital Road away from the front of the hospital to create a larger area of public amenity space at the front, reducing rat running past the historic building and emphasising the pedestrian heritage trail with runs through key parts of the whole development.

As part of the main design team on the project, our team based in Grainger’s Aldershot office have helped to create refuse and parking strategies for inclusion in the Design and Access Statement which met with requirements of Rushmoor Borough council whilst also dealing with the constraints placed on the design by the existing buildings. For example by negotiating longer walk distances for residents to their bins it was possible to place communal bin stores in areas away from the main building, reducing their impact on the appearance of the Victorian exterior.

A 3d model of the area has been created using 12d model to ensure that the proposed new elements of the design work with the levels dictated by the existing buildings and this model can also be used to inform the drainage design which will take the form of both traditional manhole, pipe and gully network plus areas of permeable paving. A CCTV survey of the existing drainage around the site has been commissioned to ascertain the condition of the existing pipes in order to inform the design of the new drainage systems and establish whether any of the existing network may be reused.

Other key elements which the Mayer Brown team has been involved with so far are the lighting scheme and input into the materials to be used in the scheme.


The Cambridge Military Hospital phase was submitted for planning in November. Due to the scale of the work involved in ensuring the safety of the building going forward construction is not set to begin for another year or so. The future involvement of our team will include preparation of drawing for tender, detailed design of roads and drainage followed by a construction package, setting out information and working with the contractors on site to help deliver the Phase to completion.

Cambridge Military Hospital Plan

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