Government intervenes after Liverpool planners failure at ‘joined-up’ thinking.

The government has issued a directive stalling work on a bypass in Liverpool after the city council approved the scheme, despite the fact that it would mean building a road straight through the proposed site of a new hospital.

Last year £500 m was granted to rebuild the Royal Liverpool Hospital as part of a total regeneration of healthcare on Merseyside. If the Hall Lane bypass were to be built, the entire project would have to be re-designed, with the hospital split across multiple sites.

While the council maintains that the bypass is essential if congestion is to be reduced in time for 2008, when Liverpool becomes European City of Culture, the hospital’s chief executive Maggie Boyle has called for an inquiry. A spokesman for the Royal said: “the gloves are off now. We have asked for a public inquiry into this decision.”