A community hub for local people

  • Service: New developments
  • Client: NHS Hull and Hull City Council

The NHS and Hull City Council aspired to deliver a community hub in the deprived estate of Orchard Park, North Hull. To deliver this, the project team had several challenges to overcome:

• Meeting both organisations’ aspirations.
• Developing a shared vision and single team.
• Ensuring timeframes were aligned and met.
• Navigating Council PFI credits with the NHS LIFT lease plus agreement model.
• Engaging the local community so they would feel ownership of the building and look after it.

Early on in the project’s life there was a temptation to try to solve the entire estate’s problems. The project team needed to sensitively avoid mission drift and keep both organisations focused on the aims of the project in hand.

A single team was established from the outset. This ensured all parties discussed and understood each other’s aspirations, leading to a joined up project brief. This single team saw the project through the design development, construction and handover phases.

From the outset it was clear the facility would have a range of user groups. The team dedicated time to ensure that all stakeholders felt connected to the new building, creating a sense of pride and belonging. From the early planning stages, during the development, throughout the build and down to completion, members of the local community were involved in helping to influence decisions about The Orchard Centre. Examples of stakeholder engagement included:

• Focus groups and development meetings to ensure the building would deliver exactly what the people using it wanted.
• Construction site visits with local children to learn about site safety and take part in events.
• Curriculum development with local schools to ensure live engagement with the site.
• Engagement with the area Regeneration.
• Board throughout the development.
• Resident involvement in the development of the Centre’s artwork, encouraging a better connection with the building.
• The creation of a wildlife garden with local community groups, enhancing the outer environment of the building and creating a natural habitat for new wildlife.
• A local workforce with 92% of the on-site team from Hull postcodes.

The Orchard Centre, delivered on time and on budget, embraces the partners’ and communities joined up vision. It is located in the heart of the Orchard Park housing estate, perfectly positioned to join up with the area’s redevelopment plans. More than 100,000 people on average access services for the facility each year. The centre houses a number of health and community service including:

• GP practices
• A community dental service
• Podiatry
• Treatment rooms
• A café and community hall
• A pharmacy
• A dental training suite
• Baby massage and child development, plus mother and toddler groups
• Stop smoking clinics
• Physiotherapy, occupational, speech and reminiscence therapies
• Dietetics
• Orthodontics
• Anticoagulation clinics
• Family planning and community midwifery clinics
• A Hull City Council Customer Service Centre
• A base for district nursing, school nursing and health visitors
• Learning disability day services Hull City Council
• A base for Hull City Council’s Area Coordination Team
• Local Policing Team