Garden-themed makeover brightens up parents room at St Richard’s

Garden-themed makeover brightens up parents room at St Richard’s

A parent’s room at St Richard’s Hospital has received a charity-funded makeover with a tranquil garden-themed wall mural taking centre stage.

The room, which is situated on the children’s ward, is a space for parents to take time out by providing a self-catering facility to make a hot drink and meal or take a shower.

When the room was closed during the pandemic, ward play specialists, Kerry Brunnen and Shelly Hill, saw a perfect opportunity to give the space a much-needed revamp.

The wall mural was inspired by West Dean gardens

Kerry said, “When parents have a poorly child staying with us on the ward, they often don’t look after themselves properly. They’ll sit bedside for hours on end, skip meals or won’t want to trouble a member of staff for a drink to stay hydrated. This room is equipped with a kitchen, seating, TV and a shower room so they can step away from the ward environment and take back some ‘me time’. We felt a makeover would create a space that felt much more relaxing and restful.”

With funding support from Love Your Hospital, the dedicated charity of St Richard’s, Worthing and Southlands Hospitals, the room has been upgraded with a new sofa and two chairs, a two-person dining table, TV, cutlery, crockery and a vibrant wall mural of greenery and cool waters.

The artist, Chloe Dowsett of C.D. Sign and Design, had already painted a wall mural on another unit in the hospital and was approached to work her artistic magic on the children’s ward.

Chloe said, “I welcome any work that will make someone smile and brighten up a space that people may need to rest or relax in. On a personal level, this project on Howard Ward was a special one. I was actually born at St Richard’s in 1989 and my whole family live in the surrounding villages and always have as long as I can remember. The staff are always so thoughtful and I’ve always celebrated the care I have received there.”

Ward staff wanted the mural to be connected to the local area and chose images of West Dean Gardens as inspiration. Chloe was able to incorporate the garden’s flint bridge, Victorian glasshouse and pond surrounded by an array of trees, flowers and plants.

Kerry said, “As play specialists, we’re here to support parents when they’re going through a challenging time and this project has really been at the heart of that. The response from parents, staff and patients has been overwhelmingly positive and our parent’s room has now been transformed from a plain, magnolia room into a beautiful and tranquil space we’re all really proud of.”

St Richard’s Hospital staff gifted Wellbeing Garden

St Richard’s Hospital staff gifted Wellbeing Garden

Staff at St Richard’s Hospital have been gifted a beautiful ‘Wellbeing Garden’ as a thank you for their hard work and dedication during the pandemic from a local landscape and garden designer.

Andy Stedman Design, based in Chichester, initially came on board with the project when Love Your Hospital, the dedicated charity for St Richard’s, Worthing and Southlands Hospitals, reached out for his services in 2020 to work on a new design for the existing space.

Sadly, the funding earmarked for the project fell through putting the garden makeover at risk. Andy stepped in with his colleague Marc Morris, both of whom have a very close connection to St Richard’s, with the incredible offer of resurrecting the project almost to the tune of more than £200,000.

Andy and his team made phone calls and posted on social media to call in the biggest of favours from local, national, and even European suppliers and contractors to donate their time, expertise and materials for free to help make this wonderful garden design transition from paper to reality.

Wellbeing Garden designed by Andy Stedman Design

The new garden boasts an open seated area paved with porcelain slabs, secure bike storage with ‘living roofs’ and is surrounded by feature planters featuring architectural trees and beds full of colourful perennials. The garden also has one large and two smaller shaded canopies, which were funded by donations to Love Your Hospital’s Hospital Heroes Covid-19 Appeal.

Andy Stedman said: “Being outside in a garden, in nature is without doubt hugely regenerative – lowering feelings of stress and increasing feelings of wellbeing. We are proud and very grateful to have worked together with our local suppliers and contractors to bring this garden to life for staff at St Richard’s hospital and we are excited to see their reaction to the new space! Everyone can benefit from being in an outdoor space, and we hope this garden will inspire people to make the most of their space at home to reap the benefits, whether gardening, relaxing or dining.”

Steve Crump, Director of Charites for Love Your Hospital said: “This garden transformation fits into a programme of work supported by the charity dedicated to improving outdoor facilities for patients and staff across all our hospitals. It has created a calm and tranquil space for staff at St Richard’s to spend time in away from their working environments. The biggest thank you to Andy Stedman and his team for getting this project back on track and to the many suppliers and contractors who supported it to completion. This truly will be a legacy to staff who went above and beyond for us all during the pandemic and to those who worked from the heart to create it.”

The garden is now open to staff and there will be an official opening of the new space on 5 November.

A huge thank you to the following who made this garden possible:
Talasey (porcelain paving)
All Green Group (clay pavers, aggregates and cement)
In-Lite (lighting)
Jewsons in Chichester (cement/plant hire)
Fordingbridge (Pegolas)
Mobilane Europe
A Place In the Garden (planters)
Viridis Plants (all plants)
City Irrigation (irrigation system)
South Coast Skips (Skip Hire)
Covers Chichester (Timber Featheredge/fixings)
Arbour Landscape Solutions (grout, primer and tile spacers)
Feel Good Films (videography)
Berni Visual (photography)
Paul Cameron Landscapes
Groundwave Ltd
Utopia Landscapes Ltd
Gibbard and Sons Ltd
Ko Plumbing and Heating Ltd
J&H Contruction Ltd
Wes Landscaping and Property Solutions Ltd
Outside Inside Garden and Property Maintenance Ltd