Guest Lecture Series: Stacey Charlesworth & Chris Pickup

Architecture and heritage for mental health in the community

Stacey Charlesworth, Design Director, ADT Workplace

Chris Pickup, Studio Associate Director, IBI Group

Date: Thursday 10th December 2020, 19:00 GMT (online)

Stacey Charlesworth (Workplace & Design Director, ADT Workplace) and Chris Pickup (Architect & Studio Associate Director, IBI Group)

Thursday 10 December 2020, 19:00 GMT (online)

Convened by Dr Christina Malathouni (

Watch the event recording here

This is the fourth out of a series of five events under the title: Historical and contemporary perspectives on mental health and the built environment.

Architecture and heritage for mental health in the community

Talk 1

Stacey Charlesworth, Workplace & Design Director, ADT Workplace, “How an industrialist philanthropist’s building still works for our community today”

“A representation of the rays of a rising sun, and above, let there be light” Carnegie believed a beautiful building would lift people’s spirits and give them hope, the Scottish-born American Industrialist funded the largest individual investor in public libraries, in 1911 Walton Library in Liverpool opened to the public. Today the building has been transformed back to its former glory into a new centre for learning, recovery, health, and wellbeing. This “Carnegie classical” style Library remains in the community for all to benefit and use.

Our journey will take you through the origination of this wonderful building, its architectural features, how it was designed for the community through to its use today and how integrative design supports the mental health and well-being of our community, revolutionising the way people recover from and manage their mental health.

Architecture and heritage for mental health in the community

Talk 2

Chris Pickup, Architect & Studio Associate Director, IBI Group, “The Healthy Campus: Innovations in Community Mental Health & Wellbeing”

Positive client relationships are borne through effective communication, collaborative working and, most important of all, good listening skills. The collaboration between Hugh Baird College, The Life Rooms and Mersey Care NHS Trust makes the scheme innovative in itself. The partnership team worked collaboratively and set out to transform the campus for both improved student learning environments and local community access to healthcare services. Committing to a complex project and working closely together, these organisations recognised that community mental health and wellbeing requires a holistic approach with connections across multiple providers. The challenge for IBI was to ensure that mental health care provided at the Life Rooms felt accessible and welcoming to the local community through the design.

This presentation aims to provide an understanding of the challenges faced in South Sefton and the need for mental health care provision in the college and the community. It will look at the unique collaboration between stakeholders and provide an insight into what Hugh Baird College and Mersey Care are doing in their community to make a positive difference. The team faced several challenges along the way, including an arson attack on the existing church that nearly stopped the project in its tracks before we even made it to site!

Biographical notes:

ADT Workplace Design Director Stacey Charlesworth has a wealth of workplace strategy experience, focusing on people management and changing cultures within organisations. This knowledge has been used to develop workplace strategies to support people and develop workplace culture over the last two decades. To develop further and grow, Stacey has mentored her design team, who have researched the historic workplace data, assessed the now and looked at what the future may bring. Through this process the team have been instrumental in developing a new WellSpace initiative which creates fundamental principles to highlight the areas of design that are integral to achieving a workplace that improves people’s health and well-being. This collaboration and engagement with Stacey’s design teams, has produced award winning intelligent workplaces, which deliver high performance people-centric spaces that provide tangible and measurable benefits. 

Chris Pickup has twenty years of industry experience across a broad spectrum of sectors at IBI Group, including education, healthcare, private housing, urban design, masterplanning and 3D visualisation. Chris has a role as leader, designer and deliverer of key projects, particularly education schemes, and is the Manchester studio education lead.

Chris has a particular interest in the design process and currently leads the UK Design Excellence agenda, having been instrumental in establishing and maintaining a successful design review programme at IBI Group. Following the completion of the academic paper and acclaimed HEAD Study (Holistic Evidence And Design) carried out by Professor Peter Barrett, Chris has played a key role in developing the practical application of this research, culminating in the ‘Clever Classroom’ optimised design and the Schools Assessment Toolkit.

Chris has a long-standing working relationship with Hugh Baird College dating back to 2007. An in-depth understanding of the College’s ambition and vision has been key to the success of this relationship.

This is the fourth out of a series of five events under the title: Historical and contemporary perspectives on mental health and the built environment.

The session included discussion and Q&As.

Watch the event recording here

(Images provided by Stacey Charlesworth and Chris Pickup)