Controversial £42m Royal Free Pears Building given final go-ahead by council

An image of how the Pears Building will look

An image of how the Pears Building will look - Credit: Archant

The Royal Free’s ground breaking immunology institute has been given the green light by Camden Council.

The Pears Building, which has caused controversy throughout the planning stages, will be home to the University College London’s (UCL) Institute of Immunity and Transplantation.

The new institute will specialise in researching new treatments for leukaemia, diabetes and cancer.

The proposal had received planning permission in April 2016 subject to section 106 requirements, to ensure the building doesn’t negatively impact the local area.

St Stephen’s Trust has campaigned against the proposals, saying St Stephen’s Hall, and Hampstead Hill School is under threat if the building goes ahead.

A spokesman for St Stephen’s Trust declined to comment.

With the council approving the plans, work can now begin on the site on Rosslyn Hill. The Royal Free Charity hopes to open the institute in 2020.

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The building, designed by architects Sir Michael Hopkins and Partners will be a modern take on the old Hampstead Hospital, which stood on the same site.

Chris Burghes, chief executive of the Royal Free Charity, said: “We have worked hard to reassure the council that we are doing everything possible to meet the necessary requirements, and we are really pleased that they have approved our plan. We can’t wait to start this exciting project which will bring real benefit to the Royal Free London, UCL and the wider NHS.”