WCR Construction’s refurbishment of The Orchards care home wins Dulux Connect award for project management

The Orchards is a HC-One care home located in Shard End, east of Birmingham. It is a friendly, purpose-built care home with 66 beds offering nursing and dementia care. In February 2022, HC-One called on WCR Construction to carry out a full refresh and refurbishment of the top floor of The Orchards so that it could increase its offering for those living with dementia.


WCR Construction led the whole project from start to finish with every room on the top floor upgraded - including corridors, bedrooms, and bathrooms. The team worked closely with interior designers who advised on new room layouts and uses, new flooring and furniture, lighting upgrades and full decoration works utilising Dulux Trade products.

With a vast scope of work required in a tight-time frame of just a month, WCR Construction’s seamless project management was essential to ensure progress was kept on track. The refurbishment was a full team effort, with additional contractors called in to support when required - including demolition teams, flooring contractors, plasterers, tilers, and decorators.

Project management process

As the works were undertaken in a live care home environment, communication with the care home staff was vital to ensure safety and efficiency. Working with The Orchards’ team, WCR Construction arranged for the top floor to be unoccupied throughout the day. They also implemented appropriate phasing of areas to restrict patient and staff access when work was ongoing. 

The site also had to be suitable for patients and staff to use in the evenings, resulting in a thorough clean up at the end of every day. The time for set up and clear down each day therefore had to be factored into the project timeline. 

As no tools or materials could be left on site overnight, WCR Construction had to arrange ‘just-in-time’ deliveries. This also required careful planning to ensure minimal impact on staff and visitor parking and emergency services could access the car park if needed. 

Product choice

HC-One’s interior design team recommended the use of Dulux Trade products for the redecoration work. To withstand the busy care home environment, Dulux Trade Diamond Matt was selected for the walls. Its high durability, anti-fade and stain repellent technology mean it will stand the test of time and extend maintenance cycles. Dulux Trade Satinwood was used for all woodwork. 

Easy to apply and quick drying, these paints also require less coats, which helped the team remain on schedule. Due to their water-based formulas, Dulux Trade Diamond Matt and Dulux Trade Satinwood have low VOC levels which give off less odour and require less ventilation, meaning the premises could be safely occupied at night. Matt and satin products were also used to minimise glare which can make surfaces appear wet or slippery to those living with dementia.

The team wanted to create a warm and homely space that would feel inviting to residents and staff. Colour choice was therefore key – and made with residents in mind. The colour scheme was chosen for its calming qualities, with Buttercup and Wisteria Lemon schemes featuring soft greys and warm yellows used to evoke nature and brighten up the residents’ home, providing a base colour for all the soft furnishings and furniture. 

Warren Cooper, owner of WCR Construction, said: “We’re thrilled to have won this Dulux Connect Award. Working in healthcare environments is always a challenge, with each home requiring a bespoke approach. However, it’s a rewarding sector to work in - especially when you hear about the positive benefits it can have on patients. The correct choice of paint is vital for care homes, from a practical but also wellbeing perspective, and working with Dulux Trade means we can rely on the performance and colour-quality needed for a project.” 

The Orchards’ Home Manager said: "WCR Construction has good knowledge of working in a live care home and the various considerations that need to be factored in before, during and after the works have taken place. The team’s thorough attention to detail has resulted in an excellent finish. We were really pleased with the result. 

“We have had residents and visitors comment on how nice the unit looks and seen improvements in staff and resident wellbeing since the refurbishment was completed.  Even better still, turnover of staff has dropped due to them having a nicer working environment.”

To find out more about WCR Construction visit: http://www.wcr-construction.co.uk/ 

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