THESE are the first images inside a new young adult cardiac unit that is set to help thousands of young people with heart conditions.

With its freshly painted walls and bright, colourful corridors and comfortable surroundings it is designed to be a nicer environment for those forced to use it.

In just a few days’ time it will open its doors to welcome its first patients – and it’s all thanks to the generous people of Hampshire.

The dream of a ward designed especially for young people became a reality following the success of the Daily Echo-backed High 5 Appeal launched by Wessex Heartbeat to raise £500,000.

It has taken a mammoth effort of fundraising by businesses and people across Hampshire, but now all that is left to do is a final lick of paint.

The ward will be the first of its kind in the UK and will mean that the same staff can work with and care for young patients as they grow up.

Daily Echo:

Jennifer Kenny, Alison Farell and Tina Richardson from Wessex Heartbeat

To make it a little more bearable for those in hospital, the ward will also have a communal room with exercise machines, TVs and games consoles, a kitchen so that patients can make their own food, and 17 beds in individual rooms with en suite bathrooms.

Each detail has been thought out to help the care of patients, even down to the flooring being made to feel like patients are stepping on to a rug.

Daily Echo:

Senior siter Michelle Collins

Even the bathrooms have had a touch of sparkle added to them, with walls decorated with bright pictures of fish.

Work started on the ward in July, and contractors from the Kier Group have worked around the clock to get it ready in time for its first patients who are set to arrive on December 29.

Architect Peter Barnett, said: “The contractors have worked extremely hard to keep with the deadlines; it has turned out as we planned.

“The aim was to make it feel a little bit more hotel, rather than hospital to make it feel they are away, but somewhere special.”

Managing the ward will be senior sister, Michelle Collins, who said: “It has been an amazing effort and I think it will make a difference to the hospital stay of patients.”

Wessex Heartbeat chief executive Alison Farrell, who is soon to step down from her position, added: “So many supporters have helped us over the past two and- a-half-years and as always we can’t thank them enough.”