In addition to business-as-usual capital budgets, I am delighted that, as the right hon. Gentleman will be aware, his hospital trust will benefit from a significant part of the £2.7 billion capital funding under the health infrastructure plan—HIP 1—our deeply ambitious hospital building programme.
I thank the Minister for that. I obviously welcome the announcement—I, local residents, councillors and indeed the hon. Member for Mitcham and Morden (Siobhain McDonagh) have been campaigning on this for many years—but does he remember that in 2015 there was £219 million available for St Helier Hospital, which was then deleted from the Budget by the incoming Conservative Government? Can he reassure me that this commitment to St Helier will last beyond 9, 10, 11 or 12 December, or the date of the next general election?
The Government’s commitment is clear. While no Government can bind a future Government, our commitment is very clear, so my advice to the right hon. Gentleman’s constituents is to vote Conservative.
I would like to correct the record, in that my predecessor, Paul Burstow, mentioned before the 2015 election that he regretted the withdrawal of that money.
Does the Minister agree that, in giving us the money that we need for the Epsom and St Helier Trust, it is right to reward a plan that finally will save St Helier without using it as a political football and will improve health outcomes in a brand-new building that we can be proud to have in Sutton?
My hon. Friend is a doughty champion for his constituents and his trust, and he is absolutely right.
Not just a champion but doughty!
This plan could see two A&Es reduced to one and two maternity units reduced to one. Have the Government taken into account the need for extra capital funding for both St George’s and Croydon university trust should St Helier place this new hospital on the Sutton Hospital site?
The hon. Lady will know that the plans that will be brought forward will be clinically led and delivered and constructed by the trust itself, so I would encourage her to engage with the trust and with neighbouring trusts, but surely she would welcome this significant investment by the Government in her health infrastructure.