Innovation and excellence in science and health

History & growth

From provincial hospital to internationally renowned biomedical Campus

Little did John Addenbrooke know that the £4,500 endowment he made in 1719 to establish a small hospital in Cambridge  would lay the foundation for what, 200 years later, is a world-renowned centre of excellence and innovation in healthcare.  The table below highlights the major milestones in the development of the Campus.


1766- Opening of Addenbrooke’s Hospital - one of the first provincial, voluntary hospitals in Britain when Dr John Addenbrooke left just over £4500 in his will "to hire and fit up, purchase or erect a small, physical hospital in the town of Cambridge for poor people".
19th/early 20th centuries- Addenbrooke's grew rapidly as medical science developed
1950s- Hospital had difficulty accommodating the expansion generated by the introduction of the National Health Service. Building began on a new 66-acre site south of Cambridge.
1962- First phase of the new hospital opened by Her Majesty the Queen. The Laboratory of Molecular Biology relocated to the Addenbrooke’s site from the city centre
1980 - Official opening of new Clinical School Building
1983- Relocation of the Rosie Hospital to the Addenbrooke’s site
1993- Addenbrooke's, Fulbourn, the Rosie and their associated community services combined to form the Addenbrooke's NHS Trust.
1998- Cambridge Institute for Medical Research (University of Cambridge) established

- Regional planning guidance changed
1999- Addenbrooke’s Centre for Clinical Investigation (ACCI) opened by HRH The Duke of Edinburgh

- Publication of "Addenbrooke’s: the 2020 Vision" advocating the extension of the hospital site into Green Belt land.
2001- Addenbrooke’s NHS Trust published an update to 2020 Vision
2002 - Opening of the Hutchison/MRC Research Centre for cancer research
2003 - County Council’s Structure Plan published incorporating the case for the 2020 Vision into an emerging wider vision for the development of the southern city fringe
2004 - First multi-storey car park opened with 1,255 spaces for staff

- Addenbrooke's Trust became Cambridge University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust with greater freedom for decision-making and the ability to borrow money

- 2020 Vision at Addenbrooke’s (Version 3) published including a ‘hard‐ lined’ masterplan for the site, together with a more outline southern fringe masterplan, taking the 2020 Vision from planning to implementation

2020 Vision July 2004 Update
2006 - The Emergency Assessment Unit (EAU) opened – centralising and re-designing emergency care

- City Council adopted new Local Plan and released Green Belt for development

- Joint outline planning application for the Cambridge Biomedical Campus submitted by Cambridge University Hospitals and its development partners Countryside Properties, Liberty Property Trust and the Pemberton Trustees

2007 - HM the Queen opened the Cancer Research UK Cambridge Research Institute

- Outline planning permission for the 2020 Vision approved subject to completion of a Section 106 Agreement for up to 215,000sqm floor space for research and treatment and related support activities, landscaping and parking. The development will comprise:

- 60,000sqm of clinical research and treatment (D1)
- 130,000sqm of biomedical and biotech research and development (B1(b))
- 25,000sqm of either clinical research and treatment (D1) or higher education or sui generis medical research institute uses

It will include related support activities within use classes A1, A3, B1 or sui generis uses with no individual premises exceeding 500sqm - a primary sub-station, new areas of public realm, landscaping, parking areas, highway works, drainage works and all other associated infrastructure.
It is designated as a site for redevelopment within the Cambridge Local Plan (2006) under policy 9/5. The Cambridge Southern Fringe Area Development Framework was adopted as planning guidance in January 2006 and provides broad guidelines applicable to the development of the site. Key documents submitted with the application include a transport assessment, landscape and visual impact assessment, design and access statement, and a series of parameter and site plans. The site is in agricultural use and is defined on its western edge by the railway line and the northern edge by Long Road College playing fields. The southern edge extends as far as the southern extent of the Forvie site on Addenbrooke's. A primary substation is also proposed as part of the development which is located immediately to the west of the railway line. Both the Addenbrooke's Access Road and Cambridgeshire Guided Busway are shown as key proposed transport links into the site. The design statement incorporates a series of illustrative master plans and includes a set of design guidelines that are proposed to guide future development.

View consent here
2008 - Second multi-storey car park opened with 770 spaces for visitors and patients

- Official opening of the Institute of Metabolic Science – a partnership between the University, the Trust and the MRC

-Official opening of the Cambridge Breast Cancer Research Unit (CBCR)

- Official opening of the Addenbrooke’s Treatment Centre housing research and clinical facilities for genetics and diabetes, plus theatres and wards for short-stay and emergency surgery plus endoscopy and sterile services facilities
March 2009 - Building started on the Medical Research Councils’s new building to house the existing Laboratory of Molecular Biology
2010- Addenbrooke's Road and Francis Crick Avenue completed
2011- Cambridgeshire Guided Busway operational

- Pancreatic centre opened
2012- Deakin Learning Centre completed

- Extension to Rosie Hospital completed

- Major trauma centre established
Jan 2013- Archaeology work began on site of new multi-storey car park

- Planning consent secured for Southern Spine Road
May 2013- New MRC LMB building officially opened by the Queen
- Extension to the Rosie Hospital officially opened by the Queen

- Work started on the southern perimeter road
Nov 2013Dame Mary Archer Way opened
April 2014The Forum - approved at Planning Committee on 30 April 2014 subject to S106
July 2014A public exhibition concerning AstraZeneca's new pharmaceutical research centre and corporate HQ held at Long Road Sixth Form College. The reserved matters application is expected to be submitted in Autumn 2014.
September 2014Papworth Hospital planning application submitted
Jan 2015Papworth Hospital announced acquisition of land for new hospital in Cambridge
Dec 2014Planning permission for the state-of-the-art new Papworth Hospital granted by Cambridge City Council
Feb 2015AstraZeneca received planning consent for new global R&D centre and corporate headquarters; total of 59,821sqm Biotech and Biomedical research and development floorspace
March 2015Financial close reached for the New Papworth Hospital project