A new centre that will provide support and assistance to stroke survivors has opened its doors in BromsgroveStroke Association.
The Life After Stroke Centre of Excellence on Church Lane is a brand new facility for the Stroke Association and will enable the non-profit organisation to have a more hands-on role within the community.
Refurbishment work commenced in July 2011, but as the building was formerly a concrete testing site all internal fixtures and fittings had to be completely removed before any work could be conducted. Once the removal work was completed, partitions were added to create office space and furniture recycled from three former Stroke Association offices was installed. A new two-storey fully glazed reception area was also constructed at the rear of the building in order to create a central hub for the facility.
External alterations have also been made to the front of house car park in order to improve accessibility for visitors and introduce four new disabled spaces. A courtyard to the rear of the building has been kept intact and will now be used as an important outdoor rehabilitation space for visitors.
Shaylor Special Projects Ltd was the main contractor for the project, which was designed by Davis Weatherill Partners. Kendal was the mechanical and electrical consultant, whilst Mark Brock was the structural consultant.
Life After Stroke Centre Project Manager, Lyn Dunkley, said:
“The introduction of the new reception area is a great addition to the building as it really opens up the site. The reception is a very modern example of architecture and it has been glazed to draw in as much natural light as possible, in the process creating a bright focal point for the centre.”
“As we are a disabled charity, we have put everything that we can think of into the building to make the Life After Stroke Centre of Excellence as user-friendly for our visitors as possible. This has included widening door frames and installing a platform lift to improve accessibility and fitting ramps, handrails, DDA toilets and showers. In addition, lighting and heating facilities have been upgraded.
“We have also worked with a conservation officer for the outside lighting and as the building is located on a blind bend, we have completed a travel plan to reduce congestion by identifying the amount of traffic that will be entering and exiting the site each day.”
“The goal of this centre is to assist stroke survivors as they regain their lives and now that it is open, we can help them get involved in everyday activities that they ordinarily wouldn’t get involved with.”
The £2.2 million project was completed in December 2011 and an official opening ceremony took place on 17th January 2012. Marking the grand unveiling of the centre, the event allowed stakeholders, builders and neighbours to see the fruits of six months of hard work.
Although the centre is now open to the public, an official royal opening is due to take place in July 2012.
Lyn Dunkley added: “The Stroke Association has always had a vision of the service that we want to provide for both carers and stroke survivors and this centre will finally allow us to put that vision into practice. The centre will offer support, assistance and training to the local community of Bromsgrove and will hopefully be the first of many more facilities to come.”