Musgrove Park Hospital

It has for some time been the ambition of Art for Life to extend the range of art forms that it works with as well as offer more active opportunities for people to express themselves creatively.

In a project Artist Simon Ripley worked with Art for Life and ward staff to run a series of eight workshop sessions for patients on Eliot and Fielding wards. Using his mobile print making station in the wards bays, Simon encouraged patients, their visitors and families to create prints and drawings that he then integrated into artworks that have been created for the walls of the wards, the shared corridor and quiet room.

Live arts

Yeovil Hospital

Re-Found Sound is our music programme, funded by the Arts Council of England, it involves regular live music on the wards and has been developed in partnership with Dorset County Hospital. Musicians are booked to play in both hospitals most weeks. The programme particularly aims to reach patients with Dementia and, to date, we have been able to invite musicians who play the harp, clarinet, flute, percussion, keyboards and drums. Wherever possible we encourage patients to join in, either by playing hand percussion instruments or by singing. We have been evaluating our programme and have already found very positive outcomes for patients, these have included improvements in memory and recall, increased social interaction and concentration as well as high levels of enjoyment.

Playing live music on the wards is a specialist skill, it can often be a noisy and busy environment and as part of our project we have recruited 3 trainees who are developing their skills by attending training with our partners Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra and shadowing our regular musicians.

The final element of our programme is the commissioning of Marc Yeats as our Composer in Residence. Marc has undertaken research into the area of Dementia and will be producing a new composition in response. The piece will be launched at both Dorset County Hospital and Yeovil District Hospital Foundation Trust in the summer and will be available as a digital download.

For further information about Re-Found Sound please contact Caroline Barnes the Hospital’s Arts Coordinator

Brightly coloured postcards and pencils scattered on a table

Supported by Yeovil Hospital Charity and Thriving Communities, Postcards for Recovery is a set of creative activities and materials designed to reconnect our community after any isolating event or situation including leaving the hospital.

The activities will bring some positive distraction to keep mind and bodies happy and healthy, particularly in stressful or challenging times. From paper aeroplanes to sketchbooks and crayons the seven activities are about discovering new interests and skills that don’t need any special tools or equipment.

These free packs are currently being distributed as part of a pilot in South Somerset through our Wellbeing Hub, St Margaret’s Hospital, community partners, volunteers and the discharge team at the Hospital.

For further information about the project please contact Caroline Barnes, Hospital Art & Design Coordinator: