The Queen has unveiled a commemorative plaque at the new Birmingham Dental Hospital and School of Dentistry as part of an official visit and tour of the state-of-the-art facilities.
As part of the official visit on 19 November, HM The Queen, accompanied by the Duke of Edinburgh, also met with clinicians, researchers and students.
When it opens in early 2016, the hospital, managed by Birmingham Community Healthcare NHS Trust, will be the new home of specialist dental treatment for West Midlands’ patients and also houses the University of Birmingham’s School of Dentistry, strengthening a partnership delivering dental health and education in for the city and wider region since 1880.
The four-storey building will provide a range of high quality clinical dental services for the public in one wing, while a second wing will offer world-class research facilities and a modern learning environment for more than 600 undergraduate and postgraduate students and trainees each academic year.
With a total cost of £50m, the development is a key element of the new Edgbaston Medical Quarter and further enhances the city’s reputation as a hub of medicine, learning and life sciences.
University staff and students will enjoy the benefits of being located much closer to the main Edgbaston campus and medical school, allowing for closer integration of facilities.
The development represents the first integrated, stand-alone dental hospital and dental school to be built in the UK for almost 40 years.
This is a real success story that shows how partners from different sectors can together deliver value-for-money infrastructure projects that meet the needs of public and practitioners.Tracy Taylor, Chief Executive of Birmingham Community Healthcare NHS Trust
The realisation of the project results from several years of working closely with our development partners Birmingham and Solihull LIFT (BaS LIFT) and with the support of a wide range of organisations including Calthorpe Estates, Community Health Partnerships, One Creative Environments Ltd and Galliford Try.
Tracy Taylor, Chief Executive of Birmingham Community Healthcare NHS Trust said: “The new Birmingham Dental Hospital and School of Dentistry is a symbol of everything we want to achieve as a provider of high quality healthcare services.
“We are committed to working with partners to provide first class care and treatment for all the communities we serve in modern, accessible locations with high quality facilities.
"This is a real success story that shows how partners from different sectors can together deliver value-for-money infrastructure projects that meet the needs and expectations of public and practitioners.”
Professor Philip Lumley, Head of the School of Dentistry at the University of Birmingham said: "This new building will be a state-of-the-art home for our world-class teaching and esearch.
“Not only will the people of the city and region be able to access first-class treatment within this building, but we will be training the dental team of the future right here as well.
"This education offering combined with the ground breaking research which is carried out by our staff will allow us to develop further innovations to underpin the oral and dental health of the region and beyond."
John Taylor, Chairman of BaS LIFT, said: “This is an exceptional day for Birmingham Dental Hospital and School of Dentistry.
"I am sure our NHS and University partners, staff, students and the people of Birmingham will be extremely proud of this state-of-the-art building, world-class research facilities and modern learning environment, which is comparable to the best in the world.”
Home to the BBC’s Pebble Mill Studios between 1971 and 2004, the Pebble Mill site remained unused until construction work began in September 2013, following full planning permission in December 2012. The development replaces the 50-year-old dental hospital at St Chad’s Circus.