The Level 2 Lift Lobby at the Freeman Hospital was long overdue an upgrade, having not been refurbished since it was opened in 1977. As the primary thoroughfare from the main entrance of the busy hospital, it is a key public space as well as an arterial clinical route, giving access to the multi-storey ward block above. Its location, however, at a critical point within the circulation of the hospital, meant that the logistics required to facilitate an upgrade were not without their challenges.

Undertaken during nightshifts to minimise disruption to the working of the hospital, the completion of the lift lobby refurbishment has transformed the area. Accessibility has been improved for those with visual impairment and dementia, with clear wayfinding, ‘clutter-free’ walls and appropriate handrails to aid movement. The project sets a high quality benchmark for similar upgrades to follow, of the upper and lower lift lobbies .

The simple palette of finishes, including the feature timber detail, follows the Trust’s new design templates developed by Medical Architecture. Working alongside the Trust’s Capital Projects and Estates teams, a series of standard specifications and design items were developed and approved allowing future projects to follow a similar pattern, establishing a ‘brand’ and quality standard.

The finished project creates a high quality, fresh and modern interior, transforming the appearance of this important public area.

Newcastle, UK


The Newcastle upon Tyne Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust

Lead Consultant


Completed 2020