Work has started to create a wellbeing garden in the grounds of Huddersfield Royal Infirmary.

The aim is to create a tranquil oasis of calm for staff, patients and visitors to enjoy.

The garden is being developed behind the new A&E building and has been funded thanks to a combination of NHS Charities Together grant funding and donations from individuals and businesses to CHFT’s Charity.

The landscaping works are taking place on the site of the old nurses’ accommodation, which is currently just an area of grass.

The space will be split into seven zones, providing spaces for socialising and gentle exercise, as well as seclusion and reflection. The designated areas will be:

  • Arrival and sensory space
  • Meeting and social zone
  • Activity group zone
  • Wildlife maze zone
  • Physiotherapy space
  • Wildflower area
  • Quiet seating space

CHFT Charity manager Emma Kovaleski said: “We’ve had plans to develop a wellbeing garden since the start of the pandemic, and I’m thrilled that we’re now able to make this dream a reality.

“We know that being able to spend time outdoors can have a real impact on people’s wellbeing and soon our colleagues, patients and their loved ones will be able to enjoy this beautiful space.”

Disruption during the project is expected to be minimal, however a small number of car parking spaces at the rear of HRI have been temporarily cordoned off for the contractor’s compound.

The garden is being built by landscaping firm Horticon and is expected to be finished by early summer.

The new A&E was originally due to open in autumn 2023 but problems were found with jointing compound used in new water pipeworks and remedial works had to be carried out.

A hospital spokesman said no date had yet been set for the opening.