Pensby Wood Centre specialises in supporting people with profound disabilities. Many of the people we support in this setting have complex health needs and require others to support them will all aspects of their life. We aim to give them a range of sensory experiences and enable them to participate in a range of activities that many of us take for granted.
The centre was first opened in 1990 for people with complex needs after a group of parents successfully campaigned for a local service. Over time as people’s needs and expectations of services changed, and the building aged it no longer met the needs of the people we support.
In order to make improvements to the building, Wirral Evolutions applied for a capital bid from Wirral Council and was awarded £1.2 million pounds for a refurbishment. On 31st July 2017 work commenced to transform the building.
The building reopened on 19th July 2018 and now has nine activity areas: a sensory room, garden room, music room, sensory cooking kitchen, messy art room, medication room, pamper room, sport and wheelchair dance area, Immersive interactive room and spa area. The grounds are now home to a sensory garden with the first wheelchair swing on the Wirral.
The changes to Pensby Wood have had a huge direct impact on the people we support. We received the following feedback from the parents of a person we support in the setting:
We and his supported living staff have clearly identified that [he] is happier and stronger as a consequence of this stimulation and exercise. It was a joy to witness this at first hand when we were kindly invited to see him using these for the first time. We are also overjoyed with the transformation and share the pride that the staff have in their new home. It has set the standard for day centres on the Wirral and maybe even for centres for people with disabilities in the UK!? We keep telling people how good the building is, how good the staff are and how delighted we are. It has given us real peace of mind to know that he is being so well supported and enabled.
As a result of the new facilities he is now able to get out of his wheelchair much more and he is getting more exercise through use of the pool and the new standing frame. He is also benefiting from the sensory stimulation of the immersion room, sensory and music rooms and the changes to the outside facilities such as the wheelchair swing.
Image shows one of the people we support enjoying Pensby Wood's new interactive Sensory Room