Oriel roof terrace view - architect's impression

A £300 million contract has been awarded to Bouygues UK to build Oriel, a new eye care, research and education centre in Camden.

Oriel is a joint initiative between Moorfields Eye Hospital NHS Foundation Trust, the UCL Institute of Ophthalmology and Moorfields Eye Charity that will see services move to a brand-new integrated centre on part of the St Pancras Hospital site.

The two-acre site earmarked for Oriel was owned by Camden and Islington NHS Foundation Trust (C&I). Moorfields acquired the site on 1 February 2023 through an NHS-to-NHS transaction approved by the Secretary of State for Health.

These significant milestones follow final NHS and government approval for the centre in November 2022 and Camden Council granting full planning permission in August 2022.

Architect’s impression inside the building

Demolition of six buildings currently on the Oriel site will begin at the end of February and construction of the 10-storey, 47,000 sq. m, centre will start later in 2023.

Preparation work started on the site in autumn last year under an early works agreement with Bouygues UK and they have now developed a full construction programme with the building due to open in 2027.

The new centre – part of the New Hospital Programme, the biggest hospital building programme in a generation - will harness the expertise of the partners under one roof and will enable closer collaborative working between clinicians and researchers to speed up the delivery of the highest quality treatments and therapies for patients.

This is another major step forward for Oriel and we are very much looking forward to construction starting this year. We’ve been working in partnership with our generous donors because philanthropy is a key part of the Oriel funding mix and has a vital role in securing the future of eye health on a global scale.

We believe the new centre will provide patients, who are at the heart of everything we do, with the best treatments, faster.

Robert Dufton, chief executive, Moorfields Eye Charity

The new centre will be located in the heart of the Knowledge Quarter, an internationally renowned hub for science and innovation. It is close to the UCL Bloomsbury campus and several of our NHS, commercial and charity partners. 

Oriel will be built on two acres of the five-acre St Pancras Hospital site. The rest of the site is being developed by Camden and Islington NHS Foundation Trust and King’s Cross Central Limited Partnership in order to provide excellent clinical care in modern, accessible and sustainable mental health facilities in the local area.

Supporting Oriel

To find out more about Oriel and our fundraising to realise this world-leading project, please get in touch with Rachel Jones on rachel.jones310@nhs.net or 020 7521 4610.