Yoga, arts and drama to form part of therapies in Mundesley Hospital’s new life as mental health centre

Mundesley Hospital. Mark Wentworth.Picture: ANTONY KELLY

Mundesley Hospital. Mark Wentworth.Picture: ANTONY KELLY - Credit: Archant

Work has begun on a historic north Norfolk tuberculosis sanatorium to transform it into a new hospital for people with mental health problems.

Mundesley Hospital. Date: Aug 1995. Picture: EDP Library

Mundesley Hospital. Date: Aug 1995. Picture: EDP Library - Credit: Archant

Mundesley Hospital's chequered past has seen it empty for the past five years, but now a new organisation, Hope Community, has leased the building to turn it into a holistic centre for wellbeing.

Hope Community said it will offer, arts, yoga and drama, as well as traditional NHS-funded clinical care, for mental health conditions including bi-polar and dementia.

Colour therapist Mark Wentworth has come on board as head of holistic therapies, and said he would like to see the refurbished centre set a model of care.

'I have always wanted to have a place where people could be treated holistically,' he said. 'We have had a positive response in the community, people are pleased it is being used again.'

Mundesley Hospital. Mark Wentworth.Picture: ANTONY KELLY

Mundesley Hospital. Mark Wentworth.Picture: ANTONY KELLY - Credit: Archant


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The exterior paintwork on the grade-two listed building has been stripped back, and the lead-based paint will be replaced its modern replacement.

Inside, the walls have been painted carefully chosen colours to enhance the healing process, with peaches, greens and pinks and each room has an en suite bathroom.

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It has been funded by a group of private investors, with the hope the hospital will open in March, with space for about 38 patients.

Mr Wentworth, 50, said: 'From what I understand it will be unique.

Mundesley Hospital. Date: Jan 1957. Picture: EDP Library

Mundesley Hospital. Date: Jan 1957. Picture: EDP Library - Credit: Archant

'There is nothing else like it within the area.

'It is called Hope Community because it is doing that. It provides hope and the ethos is based very much around community.'

While the hospital will primarily treat people with different degrees of mental ill-health, Mr Wentworth said its facilities, including an education centre, would be available for the public.

In addition to arts and drama, the hospital will also have care staff, including a full-time clinical director and psychiatrists.

Norman Lamb, MP for north Norfolk and health minister, said he had an open mind and would like to meet Hope Community to find out more.

He said: 'What I don't want is institutional care a long way from home. That in my view is not therapeutic.

'I would like to find out more about the model of care and the length of stay before I form a view about whether this is a good thing. I am open minded and am keen to find out more about what they propose.'

Do you have memories of the hospital? Email sabah.meddings@archant.co.uk

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