For the recent Flourish competition I suggested a ‘Rock Garden’ in Sheffield city centre to represent the Sensory Hub.
I took the inspiration for the Rock garden from the Peak District, a famous National Park in Sheffield (Fig.1). The scenic landscape can provide an everyday sense of wellbeing to the public; especially for people who are suffering from mental health problems. For example The Exmoor landscape study (2011) showed people have positive emotional responses to the landscape where they feel ‘relaxed’, ‘happy’ and ‘peaceful’. I took into account these emotions in the design.
The outcropping stone and water are the main features seen in Peak District. These elements can be incorporated in open spaces in Sheffield city centre in a form of a ‘Rock Garden’ (Fig.2) that represents the Peak District with the integration of vegetation such as trees, hedgerow, and orchards.
Demolition material can be gathered to create landform. Different age groups can then explore and experience from different senses including, the texture from rocks, taste from orchards, smell from flowers, sound from wind representing the attractive Peak District landscapes. This design concept can also involve local communities, health centres and hospitals to deliver activities such as community garden, workshops and play features for therapeutic possibilities.
References: The Exmoor landscape – published by Fiona Fyfe (2011)
Photos from www.samuelfox.co.uk/; www.garden.ie/