Skylark is making a difference

Frank Whittle Partnership (FWP) has a wealth of experience in the healthcare sector.

We have a successful track record of delivering NHS projects across the North West over the last 25 years.

In this series we look at some of the projects we have been involved in over that time and the impact they have had on the health of people across the region.

Here we look at the development of a specialist unit helping people on their journey back to independent living.

Skylark is making a difference

The Skylark Centre at the Royal Preston Hospital is helping patients recovering from mental health conditions regain the skills associated with day-to-day living.

FWP worked with Conlon Construction to deliver the centre for the Lancashire and South Cumbria NHS Foundation Trust.

FWP coordinated the interior design of the project, with all parties working together to ensure the scheme was delivered to projected timings, despite the coronavirus lockdown.

Patients who have experienced long periods in hospital are using the facility to regain the confidence and skills needed to carry out typical activities of daily living before they are able to return home.

The centre, which features 11 beds, works to rebuild abilities such as cooking, cleaning, laundry care and shopping, as well as help patients towards returning to employment.

Lorraine McDonald-Johnson, care group manager for transformation in Lancashire and South Cumbria NHS Foundation Trust’s Mental Health Network, explained: “Supporting the practical road to recovery and helping to build confidence following a mental health condition is just as important as providing care and medication to treat the illness.

“Our team at the Skylark Centre will help patients begin the journey back to an independent life with improved wellbeing.”

David Simmons, FWP associate partner and interior designer, said: “We were tasked with delivering a robust and safe environment for patients, while also maintaining a domestic feel to the unit.

“One of our main aims was to improve the patient experience. We’ve done that through thoughtful modern design and the use of colour and light to create a calming and peaceful atmosphere.

“There’s a woodland theme running through much of the work, which gives an added air of tranquillity and a spacious feel to the whole area.

“We think we’ve delivered something special, which is far removed from people’s traditional view of a hospital unit.”