Brentry Dementia Care Home

'The Closer We Get' A Somewhere Film directed by Karen Guthrie
Photo: Nina Pope.


Somewhere - a multi-disciplinary, non-profit creative organisation run by artists Nina Pope and Karen Guthrie - has been commissioned by Willis Newson to collaborate with Noma architects and Landscape Architects Barry Chinn on the interior and landscape design for a new 48 bed dementia care home, in Bristol. The development is one 3 new care homes in the city for dementia and extra care being developed with Bristol City Council to create beautiful therapeutic spaces for residents and a long term legacy for the care homes.


Somewhere produce ambitious projects spanning film, the web, installation, live events, design and public art.  Commissioned by Willis Newson, Somewhere are responding and collaborating with Shaw Healthcare to influence the interior of Brentry Dementia Care Home, helping to create a high quality aesthetic whilst meeting the needs of the users.  Somewhere will also, with the help of Barry Chinn landscape architects, create beautiful, sensory garden spaces for the development.

This project has been commissioned and funded by Shaw Healthcare the care providers for Brentry - a new build 48 bed dementia care home, in Bristol. EG Carter are the partnering contractor delivering the build.

Somewhere have been invited to consider a unifying theme or approach that will help create a strong identity for the interior of the care home, encouraging a sense of belonging and community for residents.

Dementia-friendly interiors can help to support independence and dignity for those living with dementia. The artists will consider & respond to some of the following needs & opportunities:

  • A sense of place and meaning, linked to the home’s Bristol location
  • Artwork and imagery which will encourage engagement, communication and connection through reminiscence, stories and memories
  • The design of memory boxes and other devices to aid reminiscence and recognition
  • The creation of “places to go and things to do” in lounges, quiet rooms at the ends of corridors
  • Cues that will aid navigation and legibility of spaces
  • Structures for display of changing artwork and reminiscence objects
  • Tactile materials and ways of addressing the senses
  • Materials with good acoustic properties
  • Sensory works, light based works or those that help to tackle the physical effects of dementia



Nina Pope and Karen Guthrie met whilst at Edinburgh College of Art before they had completed MA’s in London and began working together in 1995.  In 2001 they formalised their collaboration as the arts practice Somewhere, their current works spans public art and film making.  Until recently Nina maintained an academic post in design Interactions at the Royal College of Art.  Karen works in a diverse range of roles in public art including many initiatives with Grizdale Arts, including their land / garden development.  In 2008 they won the first Northern Art Prize and in 2015 ‘The closer We Get’ won Best International Feature Film at Hot Docs and Best UK Film at Open City Documentary Festival.

Willis Newson

Willis Newson is a leading Bristol-based independent arts consultancy specialising in creative approaches to improving health and wellbeing.  It develops & delivers public art strategies for new builds and refurbishments, manages public engagement programmes, offers an affordable design service for healthcare and provides advice and guidance on using art & design to create healthy environments.

Willis Newson was established in 2001 and has since carried out over 200 projects for more than 31 NHS Trusts, as well as working on projects for private healthcare clients, contractors and architects.

Shaw Healthcare

Shaw Healthcare is one of the UK’s leading healthcare working in partnership with Primary Care Trusts (PCTs) and Social Care teams across England and Wales, developing care services and facilities for people with specific needs at the request of care commissioners. It is 82% employee owned with the remainder owned by The Shaw Foundation (a grant-making charity). They provide a spectrum of services from comprehensive care packages through to low level support in the community for older people and adults with physical, sensory or mental health support needs.

E G Carter and Co

E G Carter & Co Ltd is a fourth generation privately owned family business celebrating its 70th anniversary with its head office based in Gloucester.

The family ownership and involvement within the business continues to be very important to the ethos and philosophy the Company adopts in its day to day dealings with clients, staff and its supply chain.

The Company is proud of its small turnover of staff, that it employs over 150 trade operatives and continued to offer on an annual basis both trade and management apprenticeships.

We promote the values of transparency, collaboration, fairness and diversity and try to be inclusive of all groups and individuals affected by the activities of the firm.

This principle has been adopted with our relationship with Shaw Healthcare and as like several previous schemes we are delighted to have been chosen as their partnering contractor.  All of us at E G Carter are both delighted and excited to be involved with the delivery of the new care home at Brentry Lane, Bristol.

  • Commissioner

    Shaw Healthcare

  • Produced by

    Willis Newson

  • Partners

    Shaw Healthcare, NOMA Architects, Barry Chinn, Willis Newson, E G Carter & Co Ltd, Bristol City Council

  • Supported by

    Shaw Healthcare