Forget Me Not centre provides family support

Work to create a centre that provides family support through grief and bereavement has been completed at a Lancashire hospice. 

The new ‘Forget Me Not’ centre at St John’s Hospice in Lancaster has been designed by architecture, design and masterplanning practice Frank Whittle Partnership (FWP). 

The specialist centre in the grounds of the hospice will be a place that offers whole family support: the most effective type of therapy that was previously not available free of charge in the area.

St John’s Hospice has been providing palliative care for a wide range of life shortening conditions in North Lancashire, the South Lakes and parts of North Yorkshire since 1986. 

FWP was commissioned to deliver a place that would offer a safe, warm and welcoming environment for families and individuals to have support in a space away from home and the main hospice building. Wyre-based Huck Construction carried out the building work. 

A ‘lodge’ building on Slyne Road was removed to make way for the modern, purpose-built, facility with striking larch cladding. 

The new centre has quiet rooms, breakout spaces, open spaces for group and family activities, mixed-use areas, a kitchen and offices. 

Two special gardens are also part of the centre, including a sensory garden providing reflective spaces where young children and teenagers can be immersed in the scents, textures and colours of plants and related elements.  

Neil Ainsworth FWP partner and architect on the project, said: “The ‘Forget Me Not’ centre will allow the hospice to provide a wide range of support services for the community.  

“It is a very special building, a beacon of hope that will make a real difference to people’s lives. 

“Within the design we have used natural lighting wherever possible and have worked to create calm and friendly spaces throughout. The result is a homely feel, with strong interplay between the inside and outside spaces. We are delighted with the feedback we have received.” 

The project to build the centre began last year, following a very generous donation from Nick and Barbara Scholes, who have been supporting the charity for many years.

Nick Scholes said: “We’re both proud Lancastrians and we have a strong affection for Lancaster and the work that the St John’s Hospice has carried out for its community over the years.”

FWP, which has offices in Preston, Manchester and London, has a wealth of experience in the healthcare sector. 

It has a successful track record of delivering health projects in the North West over the last 25 years. 

The practice recently worked with the Lancashire & South Cumbria NHS Foundation Trust to create an award-winning new rehabilitation centre in Wesham. 

FWP is a RIBA chartered practice as well as being CHAS and ISO 9001 accredited. It offers architecture, M&E design, structural engineering, interior design, building surveying, project management, quantity surveying and CDM consultancy services.