At Newham Hospital

Gardens and outdoor spaces have been transformed at one of England’s largest NHS trusts as a way of thanking staff and commemorating all those who tragically lost their lives to Covid-19.

The week-long project at Newham Hospital involved the revamping of new courtyard gardens and revitalising outside spaces into retreats and places of comfort for staff, patients and visitors.

With a goal of complimenting the character of the existing gardens and softening the environment to provide a level of tranquility to users, the work involved substantial pruning, planting a variety of new plants, removal and replacement of outdated furniture and installing new planters and trellises.

Memorial plaques have also been added to gardens in memory of those who died during the pandemic.

The project was managed by Ground Control, as a way of expressing its thanks to all NHS staff caring for patients during the Covid-19 pandemic.

The Billericay-based company say they utilised its design and installation expertise to upgrade the external spaces for staff, patients and visitors, providing them with a retreat and a place of comfort.

“The replenished tranquility gardens will provide a much-needed space for visitors to reflect and remember those who sadly lost their lives to Covid-19,” said Adam Sewell-Jones, Interim Chief Executive at Newham Hospital. “I’d like to thank Ground Control and supporters for the work they have done to transform the gardens.

“The therapeutic and restorative nature of hospital green spaces is widely evidenced and I believe the new tranquility gardens will go a long way in supporting the wellbeing of our staff, patients and visitors."

Andrew Attfield, associate director for public health at Barts Health NHS Trust said, “From a public health point of view, we know that access to green space aids recovery, is good for health and makes you feel better. The volunteers have clearly worked very hard – not just with their hours and their time, but with their hearts – to make this commitment to the NHS and to Newham Hospital.”

Ground Control’s original plan was to offer the garden to the Nightingale Hospital in East London - but with the hospital currently in standby mode, the decision was made to switch venue to another London-based hospital.

“There’s never been a more important time to provide a peaceful retreat for front line workers, patients and their friends & family,” said Chris Bawtree, construction project manager at Ground Control. “This is a practical way of saying ‘thank you’ and showing our support for the amazing work undertaken by all NHS staff especially during the pandemic.”

Savills and Homebase were among the companies that partnered with Ground Control on the project to contribute to the creation of the garden upgrades at Newham Hospital.

Serving a population of more than 2.5 million people, Barts Health NHS Trust is one of the largest NHS trusts in the UK and provides care to some of the most deprived London boroughs including Tower Hamlets, Waltham Forest and Newham.

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