WORK is underway on the biggest revamp of the facilities at Colchester Hospital in decades.

The multi-million pound scheme will eventually see the entrance to the hospital completely remodelled, including the reception area and the roads at the front of the facility.

It will be the first major work which has been done to the entrance since the hospital opened in 1985 and bosses say it will pave the way for the expansion of the healthcare facility, including the emergency department.

READ MORE: This is how Colchester Hospital could look after major revamp

Some disruption for patients is expected whilst work, which is expected to be completed by November, is ongoing.

Work has begun to replace the narrow blue footbridge over the lake located at the front of the hospital.

The “cramped” existing walkway will be replaced by a larger construction to provide more room for staff, patients and visitors.

Hoarding has begun to be set up around the north end of the lake and bridge to ensure the construction site is safe.

This hoarding will remain in situ throughout the works, with minor adjustments being made at each stage of the process.

Patients and visitors will be directed via a series of large notice boards, which will be placed around the front of the hospital site.

David Cohen, capital project manager at Colchester Hospital, said: “Details about the project and any changes to routes for patients and visitors will be added to a number of notice boards today (Monday).

“We will regularly change the information displayed in these notice boards so anyone coming to the front of the hospital is aware of the scheme and which route they need to take.

“Hoarding which will feature artist impressions and large chevron arrows directing people to the appropriate entrance is due to start being installed by the end of this week.

“This will be tailored according to which phase of the works is underway.”

The bridge works are set to be finished by the end of March.

Mr Cohen added: “We are also going to re-surface some of the paths around the lake on Friday (Feb 15) before access to the bridge is closed the following week, the bridge is removed and a new wider causeway is constructed.

“When the bridge replacement is complete the new causeway will be open throughout the rest of the works.”

Once the bridge is replaced by the end of March, work to create a new location for the hospital’s bus stops and a turning circle for traffic will begin.

The revamp of the reception area, including new toilet facilities, retail units and a cafe, will start after April.

The trust hopes all works will be completed by the end of the year.