Children and Young Peoples' Mental Health Service (CYPMHS) inpatient unit for West Yorkshire

How we built Red Kite View

Red Kite View (RKV) is our Children and Young People’s Mental Health Inpatient Unit which opened in January 2022 – the culmination of an epic five year project led by Leeds and York Partnership NHS Foundation Trust.

Based at the St Mary’s Hospital site in Armley, Leeds, it was designed in partnership with clinicians and young people. They have all contributed their ideas, hopes and aspirations for care. They also helped to decide on the name ‘Red Kite View’ as nature is strongly associated with mental wellbeing and rehabilitation.

The 22-bed unit is part of a drive to eliminate out-of-area placements for young people who need to be inpatients but can’t access a bed locally. Two main wards are staffed by a 100-strong expert team able to offer a wide range of therapies and support. They will work closely with the young person’s community mental health team during their stay, ensuring they can return to their families and local communities as soon as possible.

Enjoy our two-minute video news release published just before it opened in January 2022:

Dawn Hanwell, Deputy Chief Executive of Leeds and York Partnership NHS Foundation Trust (LYPFT), which runs Red Kite View, said: “It has been my privilege to lead this project and finally see it come to fruition after five years of hard work by a huge range of people. This fantastic new facility is something we in the NHS and our children, their parents and carers have so desperately wanted for so long.

“Our enhanced expert team will be providing fantastic quality care closer to home, and I sincerely hope that once it’s fully operational, it will ultimately see the end of young people going out-of-area for care.”

Tim Richardson, Head of Operations for Children and Young People’s Services at LYPFT, said: “We spent a lot of time listening to young people with lived experience of mental health services to influence the environment and the way we deliver care.

“Our young people told us they wanted Red Kite View to feel like a home-from-home, or even like a hotel, and not clinical like a hospital. They also told us nature was important in terms of wellbeing and recovery. So we designed it to feel just like that, trying to ‘bring the outside in’ where we could through space, natural light and some quite incredible artwork.”

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