Work begins on art for Tameside Macmillan Unit

Nature provides theme for artwork in new Macmillan Information and Support Centre

Willis Newson is working with Macmillan Cancer Care to remodel an existing building at Tameside General Hospital near Manchester and has appointed artist, Chris Tipping, to develop work for feature walls and glazing.

Building on existing facilities provided by the trust and Macmillan for cancer patients, the new unit will include a Macmillan Information and Support Centre, a six-chair treatment room, waiting areas, procedure rooms, and various spaces for alternative therapies.

At the start of the project a creative consultation workshop was held with patients, family and staff representatives to explore opportunities for the art, interiors and courtyard design.

The team is also working with IBI Architects, supported by KKE Architects, on landscape design to deliver an integrated approach to art, architecture and landscape.

Creative activities were used to sensitively explore the group members’ personal experience and coping strategies and to identify common themes.

Participants in the sessions all shared their appreciation of the value of ‘walking in nature’ as a healing experience and the beauty of the landscapes of Tameside.

Patient representative, Stewart Ramsden, shared his favourite walk, which will become the inspiration for the central artwork in the new centre.

Journeys through the Landscapes of Tameside is the overarching theme for the project, creating a supportive environment for patients by bringing to mind the reassuring rhythm, repetition, and movement of walking.

Tipping is taking this inspiration and Stewart's description as the starting point for his work, which he is documenting on his project blog.

Work is due be completed by October this year.

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