Demelza Children’s Hospice, London

The Children’s Hospice for Demelza in South London was constructed on a restricted land plot within the confines of existing buildings and with high boundary fencing and walling on two sides.

In an effort to minimise disruption to the buildings being used by the Greenwich Primary Care Trust, we formalised a proposal to utilise a strip of land between the buildings and one boundary line. The 4 existing Bungalows provide children’s services including administration, social services and a day centre for children with complex needs. Although a temporary path crossover was required, the alternative route avoided using the entrance road into the Bungalows and enabled us to segregate our construction works from the busy day to day activities of Wensley Close.

The hospice provides community home care nursing, hospice day care and residential short breaks for children and their families staying with them. Family support, therapies, palliative and bereavement care is also provided.

The three storey structure includes a basement car park of reinforced concrete construction retained by Contiguous perimeter piling. The upper floors are of traditional construction with a precast concrete plank first floor and metsec joisted roof.  Complex services include piped medical gas oxygen, specialist bed head units, Environmental controls of some doors, lighting and blinds, Guldmann hoist systems to specialist bathrooms with commensurate bathroom equipment and a nurse call system. These are all in addition to the air conditioning and electrical services provided that included CCTV, intruder and fire alarm installations, a door entry system and a vehicle barrier to the basement. A diesel operated generator is installed in the basement to provide emergency back up in the event of a power failure.

The external works include a “walk of life” around the building. This pathway of block paviours and granite sets are specially engraved with messages and inscriptions to raise funds to help pay for the new construction works.

A children’s play area has also been provided for Bungalow 4 to replace that lost by the construction of the new building.

Client: Demelza

Architect: Kent Design Partnership

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