N.H.S. Dementia Friendly Garden. Spring 2014

We were commissioned by the N.H.S. to design and construct this garden now called ‘Four Seasons’. It is a secluded and secure outside space with wheelchair access, offering an area to sit, and a raised border designed for patients of varying physical and mental capabilities to get their hands dirty gardening if they wish. This garden is not open to the public, and is reserved for the dementia ward and patients of the stroke unit. It can be partially viewed by all visitors, patients and staff at the hospital from windows in the North corridor. It is a safe and secure place of healing, a place to revive, a place to garden, and a place to be.┬áSince April 2015 we have helped maintain the garden on a quarterly basis, following organic gardening principles.

Please click on the thumbnails below to enlarge.

Features:

  • Garden concept, design and planting plan gifted by C.A.R. Gardens to St Mary’s Hospital NHS.
  • All access floor constructed from composite decking boards made of recycled materials. This ensure all patients can safely use the garden including wheelchairs.
  • A large central raised border clad in local Cedar, left untreated with edges bull-nosed for comfort and safety. This border gently slopes to the user to facilitate a close proximity to the soil. The height varies to allow various statures with limited mobility to be accommodated, and the overall shape is kidney to allow a wheelchair to pull up into the recess.
  • Bespoke working tray and table to sit over wheel chairs were also made and store flat in the shed, enabling everyone the opportunity to enjoy some gardening.
  • Bespoke fencing and trellis work to evoke thoughts of picturesque gardens. Paling and trellis were chosen to allow light in to neighbouring windows.
  • Bespoke shed that looks traditional and sturdy and allows tools and garden materials to be stored safely.
  • The shed forms a secret access point to the garden for ongoing maintenance and works, whilst protecting the patients sense of safety.
  • Planting for seasonal interest and with an aim to evoke memories of earlier days in gardens with scent and colour. Including climbing plants such as Roses, Clematis, Trachleospermums, Hydrangeas, Honeysuckles; shrubs, perennials and bulbs. The fence was planted on both sides to beautify the view from neighbouring windows.
  • Sculpture by Martin Evans and Boris Moscoff, including a rain tree, mosaic wall installations based on the 4 seasons and a sun design fixed to a 4 m pole to be seen from the upstairs ward.
  • Bespoke seating by Clifford J Matthews.
  • Many materials used in the construction were recycled, local and sustainable.
  • On going regular organic garden maintenance.
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