Biotecture and the Nightingale Project

on Friday, 17 July 2020. Posted in News

During the recent lockdown because of the COVID pandemic we know many of you were doing other things – many to help your local community.

Garden at Excel


Click on this image to watch the video

Richard Sabin MD of Biotecture told us that in April he got together with garden designer Patrick Collins to design a ‘garden’ for the Nightingale Project at EXCEL. The Nightingale Hospital was only ever intended to be temporary and to be there for the expected overspill of patients needing treatment for the Coronavirus but the guys really thought the surroundings needed to be more inviting for staff relaxing during their breaks.

It was a real team effort with donations of help, plants, compost, containers etc.from many companies in the south. And of course green wall panels from Biotcture. It certainly meant that the NHS staff had somewhere to relax and recuperate between breaks/shifts.

Richard also explained that after this, they sent a team of 10 men to Bristol Royal Infirmary to create a well-being garden for the NHS staff there. Again this was purely voluntary but the difference is this is a permanent garden.

Here is the official release about Biotcture's involvement with the Nightingale Project plus details f the other companies involved:

Biotecture creates an oasis of calm for doctors and nurses at NHS Nightingale London

In just three days, green infrastructure specialist, Biotecture created a garden for the staff at NHS Nightingale London. The space outside their change and shower Portakabins where all staff collect their scrubs has been transformed from a dusty utilitarian space into a greener, more welcoming environment in which to unwind at the end of a shift.

When the hospital is fully operational, 1,600 members of staff will pass through the area every day to access clothing, showers and changing rooms. The 100m2 central breakout area features a 2.4-metre-high vertical garden backdrop, trees, artificial grass and outdoor furniture.

Living wall specialist, Biotecture, was approached by contractor, Mace, seeking a vision on improving the look and feel of the area. Biotecture’s MD, Richard Sabin, immediately offered to donate plants, staff time and 600 of their vertical planters, PlantBox. Richard then got to work calling on local West Sussex nurseries to donate thousands more plants and a host of other businesses to donate trees, pots, seats, parasols, artificial lawn, and irrigation services. Friends volunteered their time to help plant up the living walls, and Richard also called on renowned garden designer, Patrick Collins, for a design that worked within the limitations of the site.

The Biotecture team had just two days to coordinate everything and plant up the vertical garden, and then one day on site for the installation.

Richard Sabin, Managing Director of Biotecture, said: “We’re delighted to be able to give something back to the amazing doctors, nurses and other NHS staff, working tirelessly to support us during this crisis. The feedback from staff so far has been absolutely wonderful and we hope the garden can provide some solace before or after a shift at the Hospital.

“This was truly a team effort. I was blown away by the support we received. The volume and value of items which were willingly volunteered was very humbling. It really was a rewarding project to lead, and I would love to be able to offer this to other hospitals.”

When Liz Wells, Associate Director at St. Mary's General Hospital, working as Operational Manager at Nightingale, first saw the new garden, she said: “It’s just gorgeous, it makes such a difference. We get stuck indoors and forget about the sun! It will be lovely to sit here and get some fresh air.”


The businesses involved in this project are listed below:

Patrick Collins Design advice
Growing Revolution PlantBox vertical planters
Newey Nursery Plants
Plants2People Plants
The Farplants Group Plants
Biotecture Project Management & Install
Cameron Irrigation Irrigation
NamGrass Artificial grass
Pots and Pithoi Hand crafted terracotta pots
Provender Nurseries Multi-stem birch trees
Scancom Garden furniture
Hills Plants Plant deliveries