Publish date: 17 November 2021


Mersey Care is proud to announce that its new specialist dementia care service in Thomas Lane, Knotty Ash, Liverpool, is to be renamed Leigh Moss Hospital.

The name has local historical links to predecessors on that site including a care home and special needs’ school, as well as recognising that both inpatient and community services that have relocated there are from Mossley Hill Hospital – hence ‘Moss’.

The inpatient area is to be named Fern Ward – suggested as it is a special and ancient plant often associated with moss. Ferns have a range of positive properties ranging from some being used as a food source, for medicines or to help remove pollutants from the atmosphere or contaminated soils. The name ‘Fern’ is also compatible with other wards across Mersey Care which use natural features such as trees, plants or rivers as the basis for names.

A range of stakeholders including service users, clinical and corporate staff have been involved in the unit and ward renaming, which has been confirmed by Chairman Beatrice Fraenkel and executive team. The winner of the ward name competition was Dr Anna Richman, who wins a £50 voucher.

It is a major transformation of the former Thomas Leigh care home, which will serve as a permanent base for these specialist local NHS services well into the future.

Mersey Care’s Executive Director of Estates Elaine Darbyshire said: “We’re delighted to announce the completion of yet another facility that will be a of great benefit to the vulnerable group of people who will use this service. It also brings together a team of expert staff on one state of the art site to support the needs of those patients and their families.”

A new dementia-friendly garden was completed in September that will further enhance the experience of patients, carers and staff. It has all-weather surfaces and has been designed to prevent slips, trips and falls, plus a range of outdoor features and equipment, storage and seating areas for all year round use.

The building is fully operational and an official opening and renaming ceremony is due to take place on 9 December hosted by the Local Services Division and officiated by Mersey Care’s Chairman Beatrice Fraenkel.

The site has been extensively remodelled to include a 16-bed inpatient ward on the ground floor, providing single en suite bedrooms and a dementia-friendly environment. It is part of a multi-disciplinary approach to support service users needing complex care, and their carers, and is co-located with the older adults’ complex care community mental health team (CMHT) who moved onto the site earlier this year. Watch our short film about the new specialist dementia unit.

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Left to right at newly named Leigh Moss Hospital: Gareth Crawford deputy ward manager, Helen Lockley modern matron, Lisa Garlick deputy ward manager and Sasha Howard nursing assistant, in the new dementia-friendly garden.

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Exterior views of Leigh Moss Hospital with Fern Ward located on the ground floor providing safe access to the closed inner courtyard garden, plus the CMHT, meeting rooms and offices on the first floor.