WCS Woodside

WCS Care, Spinney Hill, Warwick

Following a design competition and competitive interview Robothams were appointed by WCS Care to design a replacement specialist care home at their site on Spinney Hill in Warwick.

WCS Care are a ‘not for profit’ care provider operating 13 homes solely in Warwickshire with an unprecedented five Care Quality Commission ‘Outstanding’ ratings. They have a national reputation for the quality of their care and for innovation.

Their brief was to create a home for residents living with dementia that would enhance their quality of life drawing inspiration from the Dutch De Hogeweyk community in Weesp. Where residents live in households that reflect a ‘normal’ domestic environment. The households are arranged around courtyards and streets which access communal facilities such as a supermarket, restaurant and cinema.

The brief at WCS Woodside was to create a facility that created households with 6 to 7 residents each with its own external front door onto the site’s central courtyard. Each household would have its own kitchen, dining and living spaces designed to be domestic in scale encouraging residents to socialise and participate in preparing their own meals. Central facilities would include shop, laundry and café presented to the residents with shop fronts and signage.

The overall requirement targeted 72 bedrooms, meaning that the building would be three storeys therefore we had to successfully manage the relationship of internal and external spaces with the close proximity of adjacent residential properties.

The design is orientated so that the courtyard faces south, creating an attractive landscaped heart to the scheme, with circulation and then households wrapped around this hub. Rooms overlook the courtyard and Spinney Hill whilst pedestrian and vehicle access is from the rear on Maple Grove. The mass of the building is broken up by the arrangement of the C shaped footprint, its external palette of materials and roof profiles. Contemporary detailing uses the traditional materials to create a scheme with an intimate scale that will blend with the varied context.

The scheme received consent from Warwick District Council in May 2017 and is anticipated for completion in Autumn 2018.