Project description

Tayside Mental Health was the first healthcare project in Scotland to be procured using the Non-Profit Distribution (NPD) model.    

The new facilities are spread over 2 sites.  The facility at Murray Royal Hospital includes 60 general adult psychiatry beds; 50 psychiatry of old age beds and 67 secure service beds. Strathco Hospital includes 37 general adult psychiatry beds and 23 psychiatry beds.  Both hospitals are predominantly single storey, new build, set in a health care campus style environment.  

We were able to consider the requirements of the Health Board, which followed NHS Scotland’s ‘recovery’ as a high level abstract theme for mental health care and so together with the Health Board developed a shared vision which could, in turn, create effective and functioning facilities at both hospital sites. We were crucial in leading this process and developed a vision that fully embraced the theme of ‘recovery’ and at the same time met with the Health Board’s values and needs to develop a model of care based on humanity, recovery and safety.

These values and needs were then translated into a series of clinically themed requirements for each user environment for each area of care provision:

  • Psychiatry of Old Age (POA) – striving for an ambience of protection, domestic in scale and feel, with readily vision connections to simple daily life such as parkland and sports field provision;

  • General Adult Psychiatry (GAP) – wishing to express clear routes to recovery; though the timescale may vary, people will arrive for treatment and leave again therefore therapy spaces should be vibrant, obvious and easily reached; and

  • Secure Care Clinic (SCC) – this being a place where people ‘live’ and ‘work’, for some people this will form their entire environment, therefore the different zones sought to express variety and a great effort was made to make the residents feel like walking home to work.

The project reached financial close in June 2010 and was handed over in June 2012. The partnership is now in the operational phase, which is for 30 years.

Responsible business



The main ethos for sustainability centred on minimisation of services intervention. The constraints of the site and its location minimised the potential benefits of what are now considered traditional renewable technologies. As a result the design effort was concentrated on the imaginative use of light and landscaping. In reducing energy usage and premating a care environment. As a result of this approach the hospital has an award winning design that is light, airy and spacious adding value through attention to the site geography reducing the lighting electrical load.

Creative use of windows and landscaping also helps to connect the inside of the building with attractive external garden and courtyard areas proven to improve mental well-being.


Morgan Sindall plc, FES.


NHS Tayside


Morgan Sindall Investments and FES