The Bespoke team at Rolls-Royce Motor Cars has unveiled its smallest car yet, crafted for the St Richard’s Hospital Paediatric Day Surgery Unit.
With St Richard’s located in Rolls-Royce’s home town of Chichester, West Sussex, the new 'SRH' car will allow children awaiting surgery to drive themselves to the operating theatre, through the Pediatric Unit corridors which are lined with ‘traffic signs’ - with the aim of reducing the worry and nerves for children heading to surgery.
Rolls-Royce Motor Cars welcomed two test drivers from the Pediatric Unit at St Richard’s Hospital, Molly Matthews and Hari Rajyaguru, their families and the day surgery team at St Richard’s Hospital.
“We are a proud member of the community here in West Sussex. The Pediatric Unit at St Richard’s Hospital, Chichester does such vital work in providing essential care to young people and their families,” said Torsten Müller-Ötvös, CEO, Rolls-Royce Motor Cars. “We hope that the Rolls‑Royce SRH will serve to make the experience for young people during treatment a little less stressful.”
Finished in a two-tone paint-scheme of Andalusian White and Salamanca Blue with matching two-tone steering wheel and seats, the SRH has self-righting wheel centres and a top speed of 10mph - courtesy of power derived from a 24 volt battery. For those preferring a more sedate journey, the speed setting is variable and can be limited to a statelier 4mph. In addition to developing competency in new chassis and electronic technologies, the project team also utilised 3D printing techniques for the design. This included production of the iconic Spirit of Ecstasy and the bespoke paddle controls.
Lawrie Mewse, Project Leader of the Rolls-Royce SRH, said: “I am immensely proud of what the team has achieved. This project showcases the amazing skills and technology that exist in the Bespoke Manufacturing Team and across every area at the Home of Rolls Royce here at Goodwood. However, the most important thing is giving back to the local community and having a positive impact for children and their parents during their time in hospital.”
Marianne Griffiths, Chief Executive, of Western Sussex Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, said, “Just like the joy it will bring to our young patients, the Rolls-Royce SRH is simply priceless. It is a very special gift and one of the most wonderful donations ever received by Love Your Hospital, our trust’s dedicated charity. On behalf of everyone at Western Sussex Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, I would like to say a heartfelt thank you to Rolls-Royce Motor Cars and especially the small team who volunteered so much of their own time in support of St Richard’s Hospital in Chichester and the children we care for.”
Sue Nicholls, Paediatric Matron at Western Sussex Hospitals NSH Foundation Trust, said, “It’s wonderful seeing a smiley face on the way to theatre, rather than an apprehensive one, and everyone caring for children at St Richard’s is so grateful to Rolls-Royce for this unique donation. We know boys and girls alike will love driving it and in the coming years it will help turn a daunting experience into a more fun and enjoyable one for hundreds and hundreds of children.”