PATIENTS suffering with dementia at Broomfield Hospital will soon be able to enjoy a “calm and elegant”

garden thanks to the award-winning design of a Writtle College student.

The imaginative garden, designed by Michael Ekers, 33, from Brentwood, a garden design student at Writtle, won favour with managers and clinical leads at the hospital.

His was one of five submitted by students on his course as part of a competition, launched by the Mid-Essex NHS Trust, to design a garden for those with dementia.

Michael’s triangular courtyard design, bounded on all sides by the three-storey hospital buildings, met the trust’s specifiations.

Work on creating it will start next month.

Elmarie Swanepoel, head of sustainable development and strategic projects at the Trust, said: “Michael’s design was thought to be elegant, capturing the elements of calm open spaces that is so valued by patients in a hospital setting.”

Michael said the idea to include a lifesize bronze sculpture of a child and dog playing on the lawn was “integral” as it embraces reminisence therapy - the comfort we derive from memories.

He said: “We can all relate to this - it evokes a strong positive emotion.”