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Great Western Hospital is a £100m scheme with 55,000m2 of floor space, built and managed through a PFI contract extending for 27 years. The building was completed in 2002. The consortium for the project was led by Carillion plc, who put sustainability issues at the forefront of the brief, with cost effective measures to implement sustainability solutions. 


Sustainability Action Plans were adopted that addressed all sustainability issues including waste minimisation. A target was set to reduce waste to landfill from development construction and operation by 50%. The following set of measures and solutions were implemented: 

Construction best practice 

  • waste minimisation best practice was shared throughout the supply chain and all partners were engaged from inception and briefed with waste minimisation requirements 
  • plasterboard waste was reduced to zero, compared to representing 20% of waste sent to landfill on similar projects. A dedicated plasterboard recycling skip was transported directly back to the manufacturer for re-use 
  • plasterboard was delivered on plasterboard pallets instead of traditional wood pallets, which were sent back to the manufacturer 


  • the design phase incorporated a whole life approach to specification. The use of longlifespan materials was adopted, thus reducing replacement and future waste generation. The flooring material chosen was a mix of linoleum and rubber which needs to be replaced only once during the 27 years, thus permitting minimal replacement and minimal waste generation 
  • prefabricated components were used extensively, e.g. concrete walling panels with windows and insulation pre-installed 
  • specifications were adjusted to reduce waste generation. Plasterboard was specially designed and made by the manufacturer to use a single rather than double skin, i.e. one 15mm panel rather than two 12.5mm panels. Panels were designed to withstand wear and tear and were pre-sealed, thus eliminating skimming and reducing the amount of paint used

Project team

Carillion plc Swindon and Marlborough NHS Trust Lafarge Plasterboard

Further information