Two people walking in the main entrance to Egdeware Community Hospital

Edgware Community Hospital


Edgware Community Hospital is a semi-secure mental health facility. Previous fire detection systems had been surface-mounted, and the hospital was eager to find a safer solution.

The Avon Ward within the Dennis Scott Unit at Edgware Community Hospital is a semi-secure mental health facility. The hospital, originally called Redhill Hospital, was built in the 1920s on 20 acres of land at Burnt Oak to comprise 175 beds. Extensive developments were made in 1936, including the addition of a 329-bed medical unit and the hospital became part of the National Health Service in 1948. Its name was changed to Edgware Community Hospital and it now forms part of Barnet Health Authority. As part of its ongoing maintenance programme, the hospital appointed Aylesbury Fire to review the fire detection system in its Quiet Rooms.

The Challenge

Quiet Rooms on the ward cannot contain any safety hazards, which means they must be completely free from objects that might be used to harm the rooms’ occupants or members of staff. Previous fire detection systems had been surface-mounted and the hospital was eager to find a safer solution. The ward is open and operational 24 hours a day, creating installation challenges to keep engineers safe while minimising disruption and distress to patients.

  • Hazard free fire detection
  • Minimal disruption

The Solution

Aylesbury Fire was appointed as installer on the project. With extensive experience working alongside the NHS to provide fire safety solutions at sites throughout the UK, they chose Apollo’s Soteria Dimension Specialist Optical Detector to maximise fire safety and security at the hospital. With its innovative anti-ligature design, the detector can be mounted flush to the ceiling with no exposed edges or wiring and the face plate secured by anti-vandal screws.

Soteria Dimension works with unique chamberless fire detection technology. An infra-red LED emits light outside the detector, which is then scattered by smoke back towards the detector and registered by a photo-diode. This ‘virtual chamber’ eliminates dust and insect ingress, minimising false alarms and ensuring that cleaning is quick and simple with less disruption to patients on the ward.

Aylesbury Fire worked for eight weeks to install ten Dimension Specialist Optical Detectors throughout the Avon Ward. Engineers worked in teams of two to complete the work quickly and efficiently with minimal impact on patients and staff.

Synchro control panels from Kentec were already in operation throughout Edgware Community Hospital. To ensure the existing system could communicate with the new Dimension detectors, a Taktis panel from Kentec was also installed enabling seamless interaction across the same network.

Due to the nature of the product, a lot of forethought is required prior to installation to ascertain the correct location, as failure to do so may result in issues. Apollo’s involvement throughout the duration of the project was faultless and the end result was exactly what the client required. Because of its anti-vandal and anti-ligature design, Dimension has a multitude of unique benefits for sectors like healthcare and we will continue recommending and using it wherever possible.

Richard Lipscombe Sales Director, Aylesbury Fire


Products used in this Case Study

The Soteria Dimension Specialist Optical Detector is independently certified to DHF TS001 for anti-ligature use in specialist areas.