BARROW and Furness Labour Party general election candidate Chris Altree has taken aim at the Conservatives for promising a “mythological” new hospital for the area.

Last month Prime Minister Boris Johnson revealed dozens of new hospitals may be built across England over the next decade.

Six of the hospital builds have been given the full go-ahead, and a further twenty one new build projects - including Barrow - are receiving seed funding to kick start their schemes.

The trust which runs hospitals in Morecambe Bay is initially being given a share of £100m to begin planning the new-builds which could be constructed between 2025 and 2030.

“It is quite disgraceful for the Conservatives to suggest a new hospital is in the pipeline when nothing of the kind is going to happen," said Mr Altree.

“The hospital they have promised is entirely mythological.

“The only money that might be available would be for building and equipment improvements."

But Simon Fell, the Conservative candidate for Furness, said: "Our hospital trust is getting seed funding for new facilities at both Barrow and Lancaster.

“The chief executive of our local hospital trust said that he was ‘delighted’ at the announcement.

“I don’t know about you, but I’d rather listen to his opinion than a Labour candidate who is desperate to make the same old headlines."

Today Mr Altree will meet student nurses outside Furness General Hospital to outline Labour’s plans to bring back bursaries and scrap university tuition fees.

“In 2017 the Conservative government scrapped bursaries for student nurses, who also now have to pay full increased tuition fees of £9,000 a year," he said.

“I have talked to nurses who trained with a student nurse bursary and who now admit they couldn’t afford to do their training now under the current system due to lack of money.

“This can be seen here in Furness and across the country as student nurse intake has dramatically dropped and our NHS is currently short of more than 40,000 nurses.”

Mr Altree continued: “This week Labour has announced its manifesto pledge to reintroduce student nurse bursaries as well as scrapping tuition fees.

“That means the young people who want to dedicate their lives to a career in nursing won’t be saddled with debt.

“Thousands of local people have in the past campaigned to defend services at Furness General and I feel sure they will do so again by voting Labour on December 12.

“If they do that they will be voting for the only party that cares for our NHS."

Mr Fell hit back saying: “This scaremongering is exactly what the NHS doesn’t need right now.

“Every election we see the same thing from the Labour Party.

“So, let’s be clear: the NHS is getting the single largest investment - some £33.9billion - that it has ever received under this Conservatives government.

“The Conservatives have been running the NHS for 44 of the last 71 years.

"We’re providing record funding and long-term investment.

"It’s time for Labour to stop scaremongering and work with us to support Furness General and our local NHS services.”