Marcia Blakenham and Laura Lee – Architecture Co-Clients
As co-clients for every Maggie’s Centre, Marcia and Laura have been part of each of the creative teams which have brought to fruition 18 unique spaces for people with cancer.
Laura’s idea of a Centre designed to nurture both visitor and staff, started when she was Maggie’s oncology nurse and evolved through many discussions with Maggie about what kind of place, as well as what kind of support they both felt would help people with cancer.
Marcia, who was a close friend of Maggie's, understood and understands (as does Laura) how much value the design of the building brings to the quality of people's experience of a Maggie's Centre. The nature of help and support at Maggies is re-enforced by our buildings and their landscapes.
Together Laura and Marcia are still learning with each new Centre, just how much they can expect from the design of these buildings. Each one has to be special, to be a rallying point for its local community. Each one must offer a haven specific to each hospital site on which it sits. Each one, with thoughtful and sensitive interplay between the creative team, can be a place where people feel safe but also where their spirits are lifted. It can offer just a bit of transformation.
The challenge, as clients for Maggie's, is to think at every stage of the design process 'what will this feel like for somebody coming into this place? 'Will this new Maggie's, as Maggie hoped, help them 'not to lose the joy of living in the fear of dying?'