P + HS Architects

P + HS Architects
P + HS Architects
P + HS Architects
P + HS Architects
P + HS Architects
P + HS Architects
P + HS Architects
P + HS Architects
P + HS Architects
P + HS Architects
P + HS Architects
P + HS Architects
P + HS Architects
P + HS Architects
P + HS Architects

P+HS is a national architectural practice specialising in the design of health and housing for the wellbeing of society. With a successful track record spanning over 27 years, the Practice has a wealth of specialist knowledge in sustainable design. One of the tenets of P+HS is to develop and maintain a sustainable business; this applies not only to the way in which we operate but also in the solutions we deliver to our clients.

For us, the sustainability agenda encompasses whole life value. The response to climate change can’t just be about windmills and ‘greenwash’, it must be an approach that starts at the very beginning of the design process and continues long after the building is handed over.

Creating sustainable developments is at the heart of our design process, it’s not an afterthought but starts right from the outset; we’re committed to it as a firm, and we apply this thinking to all our projects.

Contributing to the sustainable estate is a major element of each building we design, covering a number of key considerations:

  • Buildings which minimise carbon use, working towards zero-carbon buildings
  • Buildings which repay the investment in materials and components, making best use of the embedded carbon and investment already made in them. This means building flexibility into the design so that, should needs change, layouts and services can be adapted simply and economically to accommodate alternative use.
  • Buildings which recognise the need to support local industries and employment, minimising travel and helping build sustainable communities.

We share our knowledge, experience and best practice in sustainable design both internally and externally and this year have addressed several national audiences on the subject. Our knowledge and experience in sustainable design is acknowledged nationally.

In 2009 P+HS was commissioned by the DH to produce the Building Note on Sustainable Primary Care. Separately, Joe Biggs, our Managing Director, was invited by the NHS to Virginia Mason Hospital, Seattle, to see how LEAN working and sustainable design could influence our business and our designs. Whilst much of the emphasis of LEAN is on process, the efficient and flexible design of buildings is a key to ensuring value for money across all aspects of the building’s design.

We aim not just to meet sustainable targets but to exceed them and whilst the majority of our current affordable housing projects are working towards level 4 of the Code for Sustainable Homes, we are also designing to level 5 for some projects.

In Healthcare we have worked extensively with NEAT and, latterly, BREEAM. All of our current healthcare projects are subject to attaining a successful BREEAM rating; ‘Very Good’ for all alteration and refurbishment projects and ‘Excellent’ for all new build projects. Although BREEAM Excellent is the default standard for new healthcare buildings we are keen to push the design as far as we’re able and would always now aspire to ‘Outstanding’. Whilst we appreciate that this can be challenging and in some instances impossible to achieve for reasons outside of the team’s control, we believe that it’s a good starting point. We are currently designing two large primary care/acute schemes which are set to achieve BREEAM Outstanding; the first NHS buildings to target this.
Measures such as BREEAM and Code for Sustainable Homes (and Eco Homes before that) help us to prove the environmental credentials of our buildings to planners and clients who recognise that the benefits include:

  • Reduced carbon footprint
  • Positive outcomes for building users – improved staff productivity,
    higher morale, lower staff turnover, improved patient recovery rates in
    health buildings
  • Resilience to price volatility and high energy costs
  • Encouraging healthy living (outdoor spaces and cycle racks etc.)

In addition there is a wide acceptance that a positive correlation exists between these environmental ratings and property and rental values.

We refer to projects right across the practice to inform our decisions and our scheme for the Yorkshire Agricultural Society, completed in 2009 formed a live test bed for a number of ideas. Supported by grant aid from Yorkshire Forward, this office, training, retail and cafe scheme has won a string of awards for its sustainability credentials, recently beating Tesco’s new Green Store to the Estates Gazette Sustainable Project of the year in the category of Leisure/Retail.

Case Study 1: Regional Agricultural Centre
Client: Yorkshire Agricultural Society

Our new facility for the Yorkshire Agricultural Society has achieved national success as an exemplar in sustainable design. The principle behind the building was to create a flagship building for the rural community that would foster sustainable business and help to reverse the decline in agriculture.

It was logical that the building itself should be a model of sustainability and that the design should be simple, low technology and good value. Yorkshire Forward, the Government’s funding support agency for the area, provided gap funding to enable the scheme to explore a range of ideas towards developing a sustainable building.

The building contains no less than 22 sustainable elements including: brown field site and building orientation to maximise best use of sunlight and views out, timber frame, sheep’s wool insulation, sedum roof, ground source heat pumps, natural ventilation, The result is a truly sustainable space which:

  • provides opportunity for learning about sustainable design
  • provokes thought and discussion
  • nurtures new enterprise
  • supports British agriculture and local food
  • remains true to the core values of sustainability

In short, the building is what it claims to be: a sustainable building with integrity - right from its timber frame to its sedum roof, and all that you will find inside.

The benefit to the client has been a very popular and high profile building which supports environmental, social and economic sustainability. It has been recognised with a clutch of awards including:

Yorkshire Post Environmental Award
EG Green Awards 2009
2010 RICS Pro Yorkshire Award – Winner Sustainability
2010 RICS Pro Yorkshire Award – Winner Best Project
2010 RICS International Awards – Commended for Sustainability
RIBA White Rose Award for architecture – Silver
RIBA White Rose Sustainability Award

Case Study 2 Houghton le Spring Primary Care Centre
Client: Sunderland Teaching Primary Care Trust

The new Primary Care Centre at Houghton le Spring will provide minor injuries walk-in centre, planned care and diagnostics suite, along with minor surgery and 24 bed rehabilitation centre. The new facility will reduce the need for lengthy journeys to the main hospital and, by co-locating health services alongside leisure facilities, it is hoped to encourage healthy living too.

This scheme was identified by both the Primary Care Trust and the NHS as being a BREEAM exemplar scheme and, to this end, the team were set the challenge of achieving an ‘Outstanding’ rating. The precise siting, orientation and detailed design of the new 6,500sqm facility have all been heavily influenced by the sustainability targets established for the project.

As with all P+HS designs the structural framing and general arrangements allow for future flexibility and expansion.

A key element of the design is the incorporation of a 1m deep ventilation spine running throughout the building. P+HS worked closely with Cambridge University’s ‘Breathing Buildings’ consultancy to design an effective, passive, natural ventilation system to ensure minimal reliance on mechanical services.

The ventilation spine, together with the exposure of the thermal mass within the building facilitates passive night time cooling in the summer but also serves as a heat store in the cooler months. The spine wall is linked to an underground culvert where cool air is drawn into the building and distributed along the spine.

Detailed thermal modelling of the building informed the precise orientation of the facility and site layout to optimise all available passive means of shading and heating. In addition ground heat sources are used extensively together with solar pre-heating panels for supplementing domestic hot water demands. Green roofs are designed to attenuate storm water run-off and a vertical axis wind generator will contribute further to the energy needs of the site.

This innovative design has attracted publicity to the scheme which has positively impacted on the client. A more tangible benefit will be the anticipated cost savings that will be enjoyed for future generations in the running of the building.

Customer Testimonials

Angela Mackereth, Practice Manager at Eaglescliffe Medical Practice commented; ‘ We’re delighted with our new health centre and having a facility that can cope with the ever expanding number of patients and offer many services under one roof is just what this community needs’. From the same practice, GP Krysia Ellenger commented on the new building: ‘Just what the doctor ordered! A building that so intimately reflects our vision and our ethos. A place of light, of healing, of comfort. A building that exudes quality, calmness and soothes pain. A building that is ambitious, that reflects the modernity of medicine, of ever expanding knowledge and yet it embraces the human side A building that encourages wisdom, is kind to the soul and has context’.

Christine Gaughran for Leeds PCT commented on a new development at Tinshill in Leeds: “We are confident that the building designed by P+HS can grow to match our future needs. P+HS has already considered ways in which the building could be extended for further expansion to our services

Heather Parry, Director at the Yorkshire Agricultural Society said of the new Regional Agricultural Centre:

"At the risk of sounding evangelical, working with P+HS has been a complete pleasure!

P+HS have designed a truly amazing building for the Yorkshire Agricultural Society, which both looks phenomenal and functions brilliantly. Our building incorporates more sustainable features than any other building in this region and so there have obviously been challenges along the way but these have always been dealt with quickly and intelligently. P+HS have been as passionate about making this building perfect as we have.

When you work with P+HS you work with a commited team, who are all helpful and supportive - and just as importantly - it has been fun!"


P + HS Architects
The Old Station Station Road
United Kingdom
Phone: 01642 712684
Fax: 01642 711766