Warm welcome for garden of delights at Udston Hospital
I found it helped my mental health as it got me used to being part of a group of people who had similar interests Andrew Logan
Staff, patients and visitors gathered to see the official opening of a new garden area in the Brandon and Clyde wards at Udston Hospital.
The project, involving patients from NHS Lanarkshire’s Beckford Lodge – which treats those with complex mental health issues – and Clydesdale Community Initiative (CCI), is credited with delivering vocational training as well as bringing stability, structure and routine to patients’ lives.
Funding from the Royal Voluntary Service (RVS) helped create a new summer pavilion, new paths, raised planters and flower beds in vacant ground between the two wards.
Andrew Logan, a patient from Beckford Lodge, said: “I started the project with occupational therapy assistant practitioner George Simpson and the occupational therapy team, alongside the Clydesdale Community Initiative (CCI) in April, initially focusing on the raised flower beds, then laying the pathways.
“I found it helped my mental health as it got me used to being part of a group of people who had similar interests and it gave me a sense of achievement when I saw the finished garden.
“I’ve also been helping at other projects which gets me into the routine of working.”
Maureen Black, advanced specialist occupational therapist with the forensic community mental health team, said: “It’s always a pleasure to be able to give lots of people opportunities through one project and to see patients gaining practical skills that can be transferred into the workplace.
“The vocational experience gained by our patients is invaluable.
“The new garden is so appreciated by the patients, visitors and staff using this facility as it gives them the opportunity to spend time in an environment they can take pleasure from.”
A commemorative plaque was officially unveiled by Jennifer Russell, service manager for old age psychiatry, mental health and learning disability services, and Frances Naismith, volunteer with the RVS.
New garden Andrew Logan (left) and other Beckford Lodge patients with member of staff Maureen Black