Unique arts studio opens to patients at Chelsea and Westminster Hospital

The new CW+ Studio – a bespoke multi-functional art and cultural space at Chelsea and Westminster Hospital – welcomes its first patients today as part of our award-winning performance and participatory programme Arts for All.

Construction on the CW+ Studio was completed in March 2020 and the space was equipped to become a hub of cultural activity for the hospital community. However, at the onset of the pandemic, our in-person participatory arts programme moved online, and the CW+ Studio was temporarily transformed into a wellbeing hub for staff at Chelsea and Westminster Hospital, open 24 hours a day and providing a welcoming environment for staff to relax, reflect and refuel.

The CW+ Studio was designed and built according to accessibility and design principles set out in the CW+ Design Standards Guide, as well as those governing good practice in building better environments for patients and staff. Working with Ensigna Construction Ltd, we have achieved a design that delivers the following key elements:

  • Dementia-friendly design
  • Wheelchair accessibility
  • Meets hospital requirements – disabled toilet, air handling, fire safety
  • Adjustable lighting
  • Integrated sound system
  • Kitchen facilities
  • 100 square metres of dedicated floorspace to facilitate group workshops and events

As we emerge from the pandemic, the CW+ Studio will initially launch with a hybrid programme of online activities and events alongside small-scale ‘live’ participatory events, programming, and workshops. Long-term, the CW+ Studio will host a varied programme including artist/musical residencies, health related support groups, and carers support for our inpatients, outpatients and hospital community.

“Our ambition is to offer the best possible care during a hospital admission and to support people to stay well in their communities once discharged, by fostering healthy ageing and encouraging social engagement,” says Trystan Hawkins, Arts Director at CW+. “With the bespoke CW+ Studio space, we are able to deliver an engaging, inclusive, active and connected programme that will have far reaching health and social benefits for participants and the communities in which they live.”

Through a co-designed community approach, the CW+ Studio and arts programme expect to reach 24,360 residents (inpatients and outpatients), over 7,000 carers, through 1,128 activities over three years.

Learn more about the CW+ Studio and our award-winning arts in health programme.