£4.8million activity centre opens at regional NHS unit in Wakefield


The first phase of a multi-million pound NHS redevelopment has been completed by South West Yorkshire Partnership NHS Foundation Trust with the opening of a £4.8 million activity centre.

The new activity centre is part of the £12million redevelopment of Newton Lodge (The Yorkshire Centre for Forensic Psychiatry), a 90 bed medium secure mental health unit based at Fieldhead, Ouchthorpe Lane in Wakefield.

The new 1500 metres squared activity centre includes a full sized sports hall, workshop, art studio, therapy kitchen, music room and other spaces designed for therapeutic activity for people receiving care at the unit. It also includes a dedicated primary care treatment suite.

Newton Lodge was originally built in 1984. It is a medium secure unit for people who require NHS mental health care in a secure environment. It provides specialist care for people not only from the Trust’s areas of Barnsley, Calderdale, Kirklees and Wakefield but also from across the wider Yorkshire and the Humber region.

Sue Threadgold, clinical lead and project manager said, "We are delighted with the new activity centre; it is a fantastic space that will really improve the quality of life for people who receive care here, many of whom are with us for a number of years. We are committed to involving people in a range of activities that interest them and promote their recovery – from art to aerobics, circuit training to cycle maintenance – we have something to interest everyone.

"All our service users are provided with a structured programme of meaningful activity and individualised therapy to meet their interests and needs. The new full sized sports hall in particular is fantastic and will help us ensure people we care for can get involved in regular exercise and team sports."

The redevelopment significantly improves current facilities and has involved demolishing and rebuilding on the existing Fieldhead site in Wakefield. The next phase involves further new bedroom facilities and the expansion of the specialist women’s service, increasing the number of women who can receive specialist NHS care locally. All work is due to be completed by August 2013.

The Trust is funding the redevelopment with its own capital finances and is not tied into any private company for maintenance of the unit once completed. Interserve Construction Limited are managing and co-ordinating all contractors as well as keeping the scheme on time and to budget.

Dr Adrian Berry, the Trust’s director of forensic services, said, "Our activity centre is the first phase of the redevelopment and was completed on time and to budget. It is a significant investment for the Trust and, alongside the rest of the redevelopment, ensures that our buildings are a suitable environment in which to provide specialist, modern, high quality mental health care.

"The benefits of the new activity centre will be felt very quickly as we continue to provide structured, person-centred activity for each individual we care for, aiding their recovery.

"A key feature of the new centre is the primary care suite which includes treatment and consulting rooms and a dental suite. This means we can ensure people we care for get exactly the same standard of NHS primary care as the rest of the country, but within our medium secure service."

The redevelopment of Newton Lodge is also helping the Trust to meet targets for sustainability; protecting the environment and reducing energy consumption. For example, under floor heating has been used throughout and windcatchers have been used in the sports hall for air circulation and cooling which avoids the need for air-conditioning.

Full information is available on the Trust’s website www.southwestyorkshire.nhs.uk/newton-lodge

£4.8million activity centre opens at regional NHS unit in Wakefield

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