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12 December 2012

New hospital ward uniquely designed for 11 to 16 year olds opens at Bristol Royal Hospital for Children

New Ward 35A brand new hospital ward, uniquely designed for 11 to 16 year olds with a variety of complex health issues including cancer, was opened by University Hospital Bristol NHS Foundation Trust today (12 December) at Bristol Royal Hospital for Children. The home-from-home themed ward is unlike any other ward in the hospital thanks to design expertise by Teenage Cancer Trust and the enhancements funded jointly by Wallace & Gromit's Grand Appeal and Teenager Cancer Trust.

Deborah Lee, Director of Strategic Development, said: "This development is a response to the growing understanding that children recover more quickly and achieve better overall outcomes when the care provided is sensitive to their age and by association, the unique challenges facing them as they move through their teenage years; we are delighted with the new ward and could not have achieved this without the fantastic support of our charitable partners".

The new ward, known as Ward 35, has been built as part of the work to extend the children's hospital to accommodate services that will move fromFrenchayHospitalin 2014. Children's neurosciences, scoliosis surgery, burns and plastic surgery services will move to the children's hospital in 2014. All specialist inpatient children's services inBristolwill then be located together. 

The 14 bedded ward consists of ten single en-suite bedrooms and a four bedded bay. The majority of the beds will be used for patients who have had surgery or medical treatment and six beds will directly support young people with cancer.

To make the ward feel and look more like a home-from-home rather than a normal hospital ward, over £200,000 was donated jointly by Wallace & Gromit's Grand Appeal and Teenage Cancer Trust. It's the first time the two charities have worked together and is also a unique moment in Teenage Cancer Trust's history of lending its design expertise from building specialist cancer units in NHS hospitals across theUKto another development for young people.

To replicate a young person's bedroom at home, the patient bedrooms feature funky furniture, vibrant wall designs, mood lighting, TV/DVD equipment and computer gaming and internet facilities. Ward 35 also has two social areas, incorporating dining, gaming and chill-out zones. The areas are equipped with soft furnishings, Sky TV and games consoles. There is also a glassed garden room that is designed to bring a little bit of the outside world in, featuring a digital jukebox and Air Hockey game. A dedicated parent's room and kitchen area as well as treatment rooms and staff areas have also been created.

Anna Shepherd, Deputy Director at Wallace & Gromit's Grand Appeal comments about the opening: "It is very exciting to see one of the first stages of the children's hospital expansion complete as we continue to fundraise to support the services transferring from Frenchay Hospital in 2014.  When the hospital opened in 2001 the Adolescent Ward was created with young people in mind, however the way young people interact has changed so much since then that it is great to see this reflected in the new ward designs. Ward 35 for adolescents looks amazing and we would like to thank the many donors from Bristol and the South West who have contributed to the Grand Appeal to make this funding possible."

As the Bristol children's hospital charity, Wallace & Gromit's Grand Appeal has raised over £21 million to support the hospital, and is now committed to raising a further £3.5 million towards the funding of the children's hospital expansion. This will provide a new integrated children's cancer unit, interactive and child-friendly artwork to reduce anxiety, a state-of-the-art Hybrid Theatre and a dedicated intra-operative paediatric MRI scanner which will be the first of its kind in the South of England.

Brendan McIntyre, Teenage Cancer Trust Service Development Manager for the South comments: "This is a special moment for Teenage Cancer Trust in the South West as it marks the first phase in a multi-million pound investment we are making in young people's cancer services. Special thanks to all our supporters and in particular The Scott Williams Memorial Fund and Lady Wills who organised boutique music festival Langford Live, who have funded the Ward 35 enhancements."

The Ward 35 opening comes at a time when Teenage Cancer Trust is also working on plans to develop a new state-of-the-art specialist cancer unit for 16-24 year olds in the Bristol Haematology and Oncology Centre. In partnership with North Bristol NHS Trust, University Hospitals Bristol NHS Foundation Trust is the designated teenage and young adult principle treatment centre for the South West and Teenage Cancer Trust will be investing £3.5million into cancer services for young people in the region.

Teenage Cancer Trust is the only UK charity dedicated to improving the quality of life and chances of survival for young people with cancer aged 13 to 24. Every day, six young people are diagnosed with cancer, with approximately 160 diagnosed across the South West each year.

Sonya Thomas, aged 17, from Torpoint Cornwall, has spent many months at the children's hospital as she has Crohn's disease and ulcerative colitis. After visiting the new ward today she said: "The new environment feels more like a home than a hospital. If you have been in hospital for a long time you need to have space to relax and socialise and the new ward has three amazing rooms where this can happen."

Ella Cottle, aged 15, from Aust near Severn Beach, has been receiving treatment for cancer at the children's hospital over the last year and a half. She says: "The new ward is much more modern than the ward I was treated on and there are far more individual rooms which gives people more privacy. When I was in hospital and neutropenic they would sometimes move me to the oncology unit so that I could have my own space, but I didn't know anyone on that ward. Now they won't have to move people from the adolescent ward because there are so many single rooms here."

For more information on Wallace & Gromit's Grand Appeal visit  For more information on Teenage Cancer Trust visit