Dene Ward

Cherry Knowle Hospital, Sunderland, UK

Laing O’Rourke for Northumberland, Tyne and Wear NHS Foundation Trust

Interior Designer


Complete February 2009

Project description:
Medical Architecture provided architectural and interior design services for the refurbishment of Dene Ward; a 1970’s building within The Cherry Knowle Hospital site in Sunderland. The work comprised two phases with the aim of improving the existing space into an environment where services can operate efficiently and safely.

Phase 1 was the creation of a new Place of Safety or Section 136 Suite. The Section 136 Suite provides a dedicated entrance and waiting area complete with bedroom and en-suite facility for patients in urgent need of care.

Phase 2 provided a new day activity environment for the existing PICU patients. The feel of the clinical environment has been removed and replaced with a modern communal space. The communal space is at the heart of the Dene Ward and provides an open plan activity area for multipurpose activities, which patients and staff now enjoy.

“The transformation of the space has delighted the patients and staff. Making the space feel fresh and homely has helped reduce anxiety and tension in a patient group that are acutely mentally ill. The number of ‘incidents’ has halved in number giving a clear indication of the effect of the new internal environment on these patients.” – Anthony Buckley, Dene Ward Manager

Images by Colin Davison © MA 2012

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