Dezeen Magazine

Boiler Suit by Thomas Heatherwick

Thomas Heatherwick has completed Boiler Suit, an undulating facade of woven steel panels encasing the boiler house at Guy's Hospital in London.


The project is part of a wider improvement scheme at the hospital.


Photos are by Edmund Sumner.


Here is a press release from the hospital:


Leading designer transforms entrance to Guy’s Hospital

Internationally renowned designer, Thomas Heatherwick, has helped to transform the entrance to Guy’s Hospital as part of a major £2 million project to improve the area.

The exciting new scheme is his studio’s first commission for the National Health Service and brings together a huge number of improvements which will benefit patients, visitors and staff alike. These include widened pavements for better pedestrian access; a one-way traffic system, with designated drop off points; improved signage and lighting; and a new shop for the Friends of Guy’s Hospital.

At the centre of the scheme is the Boiler Suit, a unique façade designed to encase the boiler house which powers Guy’s Hospital. The Boiler Suit is made up of 108 undulating tiles of woven stainless steel braid and is illuminated at night to provide a distinctive welcoming beacon for staff and visitors arriving at hospital in the dark.

The project has been made possible thanks to funding from Pool of London Partnership, Guy’s and St Thomas’ Charity and the Friends of Guy’s Hospital.

Other improvements made to the Guy’s Hospital approaches include:

  • A one-way traffic system including an entry barrier at the Snowsfields end of Great Maze Pond with an intercom for vehicle drivers to gain access to the hospital entrance;
  • Better drop-off and parking arrangements for disabled visitors and patient transport vehicles;
  • Seven new CCTV cameras which monitor the entrance and the surrounding area 24 hours a day;
  • A new cycle store right next to the main entrance.

Alastair Gourlay, Capital Development Manager at Guy’s and St Thomas’ NHS Foundation Trust, said: “We have wanted to make improvements to the area around Guy’s for some time, and I am pleased that our patients and visitors are now greeted by a much more welcoming environment. The feedback we have received so far has been very positive, and we are now looking at ways of making further improvements to link into forthcoming developments at London Bridge."

Karen Sarkissian, Director of Art and Heritage at Guy’s and St Thomas’ Charity, said: “It has been enormously rewarding and exciting to commission such a prestigious designer to work with us. Thomas has come up with an eye catching design which you would not expect to encounter on a hospital site."