Airedale Hospital and Community Charity is working with Cross Hills-based interiors company, Ultimate (Commercial Interiors) Ltd, to transform a retired pacer train. The charity won the train carriage in a competition run by the Department for Transport.
The charity’s aim is to transform the carriage into a useable space for young patients to get away from the clinical setting of the hospital, as well as for schools and community groups to use as an educational space.
Ultimate (Commercial Interiors) Ltd partnered with the charity to make a difference to their community. The company is working with its suppliers and other partners to complete the refurbishment free of charge.
The two organisations have worked together over the past few months to plan the project. It will be a modern, multi-purpose space which will be exciting for children, and compliant with NHS infection and prevention standards. The carriage will include separate but complementary areas such as a library, craft table, chalkboard, sensory zone, quiet and comfortable areas. The plans also include a restored driver’s cab for children to play in.
The project is due to be complete by the end of 2022. Ultimate are now set up on site and construction is starting to commence.
Mark Hickey, Owner/Director at Ultimate (Commercial Interiors) Ltd, said:
“When the train carriage idea was first presented to us, it took us all of five minutes to decide that this is something we wanted to be part of and support.
“Obviously, Airedale Hospital is our local hospital and a large proportion of the team at Ultimate also live locally, so the opportunity to get involved was agreed by all almost immediately. I think most of us have either been treated or know someone who has been looked after by the wonderful people at the hospital, so it makes us immensely happy to give something back.”
Jodie Hearnshaw, manager at Airedale Hospital and Community Charity, said:
“Airedale Hospital and Community Charity won the train carriage in a competition run by the Department for Transport back in 2019. We’ve been working with Ultimate since early this year to bring our vision for the carriage to life and make it an exciting and innovative space for our young patients and community groups.
“It’s exciting to see the work starting on the carriage and we’re looking forward to seeing it progress over the next couple of months.
“We’re extremely grateful to Ultimate for supporting us with the refurbishment. They are a great company to work with and we’re really pleased to be working with a local company – their office is only five minutes from ours. This project will be done by the local community, for the local community. We can’t wait to reveal the finished project to everyone!”
Photograpehd L-R: Paul Alexander (Ultimate), Bobby Murriero (Ultimate), Jodie Hearnshaw (Airedale Charity manager), Amy Day (Ultimate), Mark Hickey (Ultimate)