Escaping into a winter wonderland would usually be something hospital patients could only dream of over Christmas. But now thanks to the hard work of staff and the generosity of the wider community that dream has come true at Morriston Hospital.
Last year saw the opening of a new courtyard garden in the burns and plastic surgery occupational and physiotherapy departments there.
Largely completed by contractors FP Hurley and Sons of Swansea, the garden includes a basketball hoop, mini-golf putting range and a wishing tree where patients and visitors can write their hopes for the future.
It provides a location for functional rehabilitation in the open air, and boosts patient morale as it doesn’t feel like therapy.
Now the garden has been given a festive makeover so that patients and staff can get into the seasonal spirit at this most difficult of times.
Occupational therapist Gemma Wright explained: “This year has been tough for many of us and with Christmas approaching we wanted to do something special as a department.
“We weren’t sure if we could put decorations up in the hospital so my colleague Tracy Cooling suggested we put a real tree in the garden.
“I thought we could go a step further and make the whole area into a winter wonderland so that patients and staff could come and enjoy a bit of festive cheer.”
Following a radio and social media appeal, local businesses and the public generously donated trees, garlands and decorations.
Meanwhile, occupational therapy and physiotherapy staff contributed by decorating the area with all the donated items.
Gemma said the kindness shown was humbling and they were extremely grateful to everyone who contributed.
She added: “We just wanted patients and staff to have a place to go to over Christmas so even if they had to be in hospital they could experience some of the magic and joy we have at this time of year.”
Lead Image – Lesley Brannigan, occupational therapy technician; Menna Davies, physiotherapist; Claire Poole and Una Brown, occupational therapists; Grace Hennell, physiotherapist. (Image: Swansea Bay NHS)