'I felt like I’d come home'
The Long House
NPS (SW) for North Devon Hospice, Holsworthy, Devon
The Long House provides a base for key outpatient services to patients who have been diagnosed with a life-limiting illness and need palliative care, and to their carers and families living in the community around Holsworthy. The much needed services on offer include one to one and group counselling, outpatient appointments, complementary therapies and the opportunity to work closely with the community hospital and GPs to support their patients holistically.
The 180m2 building has a domestic feel, acting as a focus for the outreach work of the hospice in this community. The plan balances smaller private, confidential spaces and open, light and airy group spaces with introverted and secure spaces for counselling arranged around an open lounge which looks out into the landscape.
A very basic prefabricated timber building had been proposed by some trustees and the hospice practitioners were keen to work hard with the architectural team to achieve a building design to support and facilitate their work. The result was a building constructed of timber and lime rendered straw bales. Local GP and Complex Care Team feedback has indicated that the building has the full support of the community which would struggle to reach such services without it. As one patient said: 'From the first time I walked in, I felt like I’ve been here forever, I felt like I’d come home.'