Skip to main content



A NEW academic centre which will benefit medical students for generations to come has officially opened its door at the Friarage Hospital.

Thanks to a £400,000 donation from the Friends of the Friarage the new STRIVE centre features an immersive simulation teaching space, a library, three teaching rooms, and a computer room, a common room, offices and a video wall.

It was officially opened by Professor Namita Kumar, postgraduate dean for Health Education England in the North East. Professor Kumar, who is also an assessor for World Federation of Medical Education, said she was delighted to officially open the centre. 

“It shows how important education and training is in enhancing our ability to provide excellent patient care,” she added.

The centre, located above the Gara ward, will put the Northallerton hospital at the forefront for providing cutting-edge training facilities for undergraduate and postgraduate medical students as well as for staff.

It will also provide a range of training opportunities for healthcare staff across North Yorkshire, Hambleton and Richmondshire in the future.

Jennie Winnard, director of education at South Tees Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, said the upgrade will bring the Friarage into the 21st century, will attract more medical, nursing and health care professional students and will allow staff to train at the Northallerton hospital rather than travel to The James Cook University Hospital in Middlesbrough.

She added, “The Friends of the Friarage have enabled us to develop first class facilities for both traditional classroom education, simulation and virtual reality education. This will allow us to ensure that the medical education provided to our students, junior doctors and all staff has us at the forefront of medical learning, which is where we want to be as a trust, enabling our provision of first class care.”

Friends of the Friarage Co-chair, Dr Antony Walters, said the Friends are delighted to have funded the academic centre at the Friarage. 

“ The provision of such a centre of excellence at our local hospital can only encourage high quality medical, nursing and paramedical staff to work and train at the Friarage,” he commented. “This of course will be beneficial for the future health and welfare of all Hambleton and Richmondshire residents.”

James Dunbar, Clinical chair at the Friarage echoed Jennie’s positiveness about the future of the Friarage, adding: "We are so grateful to the Friends of Friarage. Their funding has provided a wonderful education centre, with world class teaching facilities. This unit will deliver the healthcare workforce of the future."