The Kewstoke Convalescent Home
Kewstoke was unique in being the only convalescent home actually built by BHSF. The continuing increase in demand for convalescence, particularly from women applicants, brought about the decision to build Kewstoke as a convalescent home for women.
After many years of putting this objective into the background, mainly to increase aid to hospitals, in June 1930 the Committee was authorised to proceed with the purchase of a site at Sand Bay adjoining Kewstoke Woods near Weston super Mare.
In September 1931 the foundation stone was laid by Sir Charles Hyde. In spite of building delays and difficulties Sir Charles performed the opening ceremony on 1 July 1933. This was BHSF’s
Diamond Jubilee year and it was fitting that in this special year such a special project should become a reality. The total cost was £60,000.
Kewstoke accommodated 111 women patients and although it took several years and many special efforts to finally clear the debt, it remained a show place.
In 2005 a planning application (05/P/1614/F) was approved for the refurbishment and updating of the home as an Independent Hospital & Nursing Home. The proposal intended that the building use remains within the same general use category as that operated by the BHSF.
Most of the work was to meet registration requirements and modern standards of care through redesign of the internal layout to model the bedrooms into four groups of 15 fully staffed patient wards. Lounges, dining rooms and amenities areas support each ward area. Each patient has individual rooms and en-suite facilities with the provision of alarm call systems. The fire and smoke alarms were upgraded and new lifts installed.
The external work was minimal – new internal concrete fire escape stairs replace the present external structures and it was proposed to build two small ground floor extensions on the east side to accommodate dining rooms, with patient amenity balconies on the first floor. All external work was designed to fit the existing style and finishes of the building.
The Parish Council expressed its support for the application and wished to ensure that the building was re-opened as a nursing facility for the benefit of the community which also again provided local employment.
Cygnet Hospital Kewstoke now delivers a comprehensive and cost effective recovery focused pathway for males and females. The two female wards and three male wards provide an integrated care pathway for service users who are able to successfully move on to independent community living or a supported living service.