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Future-proofing Hamnavoe House in the Orkney Islands

We’ve recently installed and handed over 46 overhead hoist systems at Hamnavoe House, a newly built care home in Stromness, Orkney Islands. Orkney Council wanted to build a modern care home – one with the latest equipment to help care for residents now and well into the future. So, our advanced ceiling track hoist systems were ideal!

In 2016, the population of Stromness was an estimated 1,810 people with around 25% believed to be aged 65 or over. Much like in mainland UK, the older population is expected to grow in the future. This means investments in services to care for an aging population are essential, especially in more isolated regions like the Orkney Islands.

About Hamnavoe House

The newly constructed Hamnavoe House is a residential care home for older people, set to open in January 2020. It was purpose-built to replace an existing care home – called St Peters House – in the Stromness area.

Its construction was made possible thanks to an investment of around £9m by the Orkney Council. The state-of-the-art care home has 40 private bedrooms (8 more than the old St Peters House), two high-dependency bariatric rooms, and various communal areas.

To make this new, larger care home fit for the future, cutting-edge healthcare equipment was needed. That’s where Innova got involved in the project!

Consultation & Design

To better understand the needs of Hamnavoe House, we delivered professional consultation and design services. This ensured that the various hoist systems fitted provided everything the care home staff and residents needed.

Plan for a ceiling track hoist in a bariatric room
This is a plan for a hoist system in a bariatric bedroom. Our design team present this along with a key, making it easy for everyone involved in the project to understand


This project was something a bit different for our Project Management team, with each site visit involving a 1000-mile round trip. But, seeing everything completed, it was definitely well worth it!

Bob Oliver, our Projects Director, said of the project:

“Working up in Orkney provides some unique challenges, it’s a beautiful place but it’s remote and a long way from the Innova offices! Luckily, we were working with some great contractors. They were a local firm, so communication was always open and everything ran smoothly.

“The end result is a really modern care home that can support the local community for many years. It’s been brilliant; being able to deliver a remote project so well really goes to show the strength of the team and the systems we’ve got in place. We’re pleased that our hoist systems will help Hamnavoe House to accommodate residents with a wide range of needs.”

In total, we installed 46 hoist systems to provide maximum coverage in rooms throughout the home. Here’s a breakdown of everything we fitted:

  • 40 monorail systems in private bedrooms – these provide coverage from the bedroom through to the ensuite bathroom, with coverage over the w/c. This allows staff to transfer residents from bed to the bathroom using a single hoist, saving them time and energy and making the process more comfortable for the person being hoisted.
  • Four single H-frame systems in assisted bathrooms – these provide total room coverage, making the bathrooms fully accessible.
  • Two double H-frame systems in bariatric suites – These systems were specialised for plus-sized residents. They connect the bedroom to the ensuite bathroom and use AirRise260 hoist units which can safely lift up to 260kg.
Hamnavoe House
This is one of the H-frame systems installed at Hamnavoe House. You can see that the hoist connects the bathroom and the bedroom.

These bespoke systems will help the staff at Hamnavoe House care for a diverse range of residents.

All Innova hoist systems use magnets and infrared sensors to detect changes in direction on the track. This lets staff alter the path of the hoist automatically, meaning they can focus on resident care and their individual needs, rather than operating pulleys and levers.

All hoist units also come with handsets, and the 40 fitted in private bedroom came with electric traverse. This was ideal for Hamnavoe House who wanted to cater to their more independent residents who may want to operate the hoist themselves.

If you’re interested in having a ceiling track hoist system installed in your home, but aren’t sure which option would be best for you, read our Guide to Choosing a Ceiling Track Hoist System.


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