Skip to content
left end
left end
right end

UH Bristol and Weston partnership

University Hospitals Bristol NHS Foundation Trust (UH Bristol) and Weston Area Health NHS Trust (WAHT) plan to merge as one organisation in April 2020. This section of the website provides more information about the proposed merger.

The two trusts have a shared ambition to ensure Weston General Hospital remains at the heart of the community, providing services that meet the needs of its local people. With WAHT being the smallest hospital trust in the country, merging with a larger trust will help bring the financial and clinical stability it needs to continue serving its community.

A merger builds on the formal partnership agreement the trusts have had in place since May 2017, which has brought benefits for patients and staff. Bringing the two trusts together will help us to continue transforming services for our patient population.

By combining our skills and resources, we will be in a stronger position to recruit and retain great people, streamline our services so our patients receive the best quality treatment and grow the specialist services we provide to patients in the South West and beyond.   

An important step towards merger took place on 1 September 2019, when UH Bristol Chief Executive Robert Woolley and UH Bristol Chair Jeff Farrar also became Chief Executive and Chair of WAHT.  

Both organisations are committed to making the merger a reality and plans are being developed for when we bring the trusts together in April 2020. A programme team is in place to develop the full business case, which will include all the information needed for decision-makers to approve the business case for merger in November 2019.

The full business case will go to both Trust Boards in November 2019 and will then need to go through significant approvals before a final decision is made by the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, with the plan to merge the trusts on 1 April 2020.

Since our partnership was established we have seen lots of excellent examples of teams collaborating and working more closely together to benefit our staff and our patients. For example, in June 2019 maternity staff at Weston formally joined the UH Bristol workforce, strengthening the maternity service in North Somerset and building on the great partnership working of recent years.

This has brought benefits to the service, helping us to recruit more midwives, providing developments opportunities for staff to work in different types of maternity settings and helping to further sustain the service.

If you have any questions about the proposed merger, please email

Useful links

Proposed merger takes a significant step forward (30 July 2019)

Two NHS Trusts to work towards possible merger (31 January 2018)

Weston Area Health Trust and University Hospitals Bristol NHS Foundation Trust agree formal partnership arrangement (9 February 2017)

Strategic Outline Business Case (Click on item 12 or scroll to page 209)