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Royal Free Hospital

The Royal Free Hospital is a major teaching hospital in the Hampstead area of the London Borough of Camden. The hospital is part of the Royal Free London NHS Foundation Trust, which also runs services at Barnet Hospital, Chase Farm Hospital and several other sites.

Established in 1828 by William Marsden, a newly qualified surgeon, after he found a penniless young woman who was in desperate need of medical care. None of the local hospitals would take her, and so sadly she died two days later. Shocked by these events Marsden set up the Royal Free Hospital on the founding principle that they would take in anyone who needed treatment – the first hospital in London to do so and the only London hospital to stay open during the 19th-century cholera epidemics.

Today the hospital continues to lead improvements in healthcare and have some of the best clinical outcomes in the country.

With demand for the hospital's facilities growing, a new building was proposed and in June 2021 the brand new 60million pound Pears Building was opened. A ground-breaking collaboration between the Royal Free Charity, UCL and the Royal Free London NHS Foundation Trust, this new building brings together the theory and implementation of research as well as allow the public easy access to the latest discoveries in immunology.

Cornerstone Group Fire and Security Systems, who are a valued member of the Hochiki System partners network were commissioned by a major London based mechanical and electrical contractor to scope, design and install the life safety systems in this new facility, which is now one of the largest patient-focused immunology centres in Europe.

The equipment installed at the site was Hochiki HFP range of devices which utilise the globally proven open protocol ESP technology. Famed for its quality and ease of installation reduction, the ESP range is adaptable to a broad range of environments and applications. From small to very large areas, the range can be utilised to fit almost any environment, and because the range benefits from false alarm reduction technology, it was particularly suited to this sensitive and complex hospital and research environment.

Neil Eves, Head of System Sales at Hochiki Europe shares

“There was a very extensive cause and effect requirement for this project and significant witness testing required subsequently, however it is testament to the skilful installation by Cornerstone and the quality of the product that has led to there being no unwarranted false alarms on the project to date”.

Neil Thurgood, Project Manager explains

“A state of the art building like this requires the very best in fire detection technology to protect the patients, staff and assets. Cornerstone have worked with Hochiki Europe for several years now so we knew their devices would be the best for this project. The system at Royal Free’s Pear Building is run off four panels and eight loops. We’ve installed Hochiki sounders, as well as heat and smoke detectors and call points.

Hochiki devices are world famous for their ease of install and reliability, particularly in reducing false alarms. The system has been in for a year now and there have been no issues at all”.

Cornerstone group also commented that the cost for this project was competitive;

“When you are dealing with buildings such as this, which are operating to strict NHS budgets, it’s essential to work with manufacturers who understand this. Our Hochiki rep understood the brief and is among the most professional and helpful I’ve ever worked with. We also own the service contract for this building, so it's good to know the Hochiki devices that are installed are easy to maintain”.

Royal Free Hospital Case Study

Click here for further information on the HFP Range from Hochiki.