Waymarker stone sculpture project at Torbay Hospital unveiled

waymarker stone

Published: 6 January 2021

A new waymarker sculpture trail has been unveiled on the Torbay Hospital site as part of a celebration of green spaces and in recognition of their benefits for wellbeing.

Devon-based sculptor Zoe Singleton collaborated with the Trust’s HeArTs team (Health and the Arts in Torbay and South Devon) to develop the Waymarker Project. The five sculptures form a trail connecting spaces along a route for people to pause, think and reflect as they walk or rest amidst the grass and trees.

Through engagement with staff, Zoe identified key words from their thoughts about the importance of outdoor space. The words were handwritten by staff to highlight the personal nature of the words’ meaning.

David Alderson, Clinical Lead for HeArTs, said: “Over the spring and summer, the open green spaces at Torbay Hospital were really important for staff to find sanctuary and solace. We wanted to find ways to promote awareness of and encourage people to engage with these areas, and the waymarker stones are one of the ways we have done this.”

Liz Davenport, Chief Executive of Torbay and South Devon NHS Foundation Trust said: “It has never been more important than now to make sure that we protect the health and wellbeing of the people who do our caring, and the way marker stones are a really important symbol.”

The project was opened virtually by Member of Parliament for Torbay, Kevin Foster, who said: “It’s wonderful to see both the thoughts people have had, inspired by the places the stones are in, and also the diversity of the staff that work at the hospital in terms of the languages represented.

“I’d like to pay tribute to Zoe and the team at Torbay Culture who have helped take this project forward, and it’s something that is probably going to be quite a lasting memory of this time and some of the messages about calm and relaxation perhaps are even more important when there are so many challenges facing us.”

HeArTs supports a range of projects across health and community care sites for therapeutic purposes and which explore the emotional and physical effects of nature on health and wellbeing.

A video has been produced which provides further background on the project and can be viewed below.


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