Figure of eight design to bring peace of mind for mental health patients
Work has started on £11million development, designed by Race Cottam Associates, which will provide a state-of-the-art facility for elderly mental health patients at a Chesterfield hospital .
The showcase design at Walton Hospital features a figure of eight layout specifically designed to ensure that wards do not have dead ends and with wide corridors to maximise the building’s use of natural light. The demolition of two vacant buildings will pave the way for two, purpose-designed, 24-bedded wards. All rooms will be single-bedded with ensuite facilities and the development will feature physiotherapy, occupational therapy and catering services.
Tim Robinson, Race Cottam’s lead architect, said: "The form of this building creates an enclosed courtyard garden for patient use throughout the year. Medical research has shown exposure to nature has a number of psychological benefits to patients with mental health problems.
“There are improved reception and staff facilities all provided in a single storey building and we have tried to provide a welcoming, non-institutional atmosphere.”
Tracy Allen, Derbyshire Community Health Services’ managing director said: “It has been such a long time in the planning but it’s nearly here now and in just over a year’s time we will be moving into a fantastic facility.
“There’s no gain without pain and I want to say a big thank you to the staff at Walton Hospital and the community for their time while this has been on going. But it’ll all be worthwhile to match the fantastic service that the team provide.”
The project is due for completion in February 2010.