Portakabin's challenging building project at Royal Stoke hospital

Portakabin, the UK’s leading supplier of modular buildings, has produced a short film about how a highly complex, 4,200sqm ward and theatre building was constructed at Royal Stoke University Hospital in less than four months to help meet the increasing demand for orthopaedic services.

The video is a fly through the £13.5 million building showing the clean air theatres for all orthopaedic procedures, recovery room, ward bays and single ensuite rooms. It features interviews with a director of University of North Midlands NHS Trust and one of the ward managers providing a clinical perspective of the new building.

Commenting on the film, Robert Snook, Director and General Manager of Portakabin Hire Division, said, “We believe this project will really change perceptions about just what can be achieved with modular construction – in an extremely short timescale and on a highly constrained hospital site. The success of this project allowed the Trust to have its new orthopaedics unit up and running more quickly, to meet the increasing demand for services and enhance patients’ experience.”

“This was a very challenging project in terms of scale, logistics, difficult access for vehicles and the extremely close proximity of existing wards which had to remain operational throughout.”

“Constructed to permanent standards, the building will be in use for five years, giving the Trust much greater flexibility as the facilities can be removed or adapted if service needs change.”




The facility has been designed to provide excellent light, space, décor and infection control and was installed by Portakabin immediately adjacent to the main hospital, with minimal impact on service provision. The building structure was delivered as 124 modules which were installed in a carefully planned operation complete with wall finishes, internal partitioning, mechanical and electrical services and flooring already in place. This approach further reduced work and disruption on this busy hospital site.

Modular construction is a fast and flexible way for healthcare providers to expand or relocate services, particularly on constrained sites. The hiring of buildings also allows projects to be funded cost effectively from revenue rather than capital budget streams, giving NHS trusts much greater flexibility to meet changing local needs.

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