Southmead Hospital

Working in close partnership to deliver an integrated access control system for Southmead hospital in Bristol, TDSi is implementing a modern, robust and future-proof solution.


In 2008, North Bristol NHS Trust identified the need for a new access control system to replace expiring equipment at Southmead. The view was to replace the current equipment and develop a solution that would be suitable for the city’s new £430 million ‘super hospital’, scheduled to open in 2014. Following a rigorous selection process, the NHS Trust elected to work with TDSi and the proposed system specification.

5000 Users

600 Doors

EXgarde Software

The Requirement

The Trust outlined a number of key criteria, principally meeting their requirements for a flexible, future-proof solution that would provide the capability for integration with a range of other site systems.

Before rolling the system out to the whole site, specific areas were nominated for a long-term trial, with the Academia and Pathology units the first to have the new access control system installed.

On successful completion of the trial, the configuration would become a template for the remainder of the site and subsequent new buildings, with the hospital’s new Data Centre, Maternity Ward and other temporary buildings, the next to be added to the network.

The Solution

The MICROgarde controllers are programmed and managed via TDSI’s EXgarde access management software – this being one of the first applications in the UK to take advantage of EXgarde Version 3, the latest release of the software.

The system incorporates MIFARE® readers and cards, giving the site true, contactless, smart card technology. Serving a current population of approximately 5,000 cardholders, the readers provide an extremely cost-effective, highly reliable solution that also allows for straightforward expansion in the future.

The same MIFARE® card can be used not only for access control but also for other site services, for example, cashless vending, in the future, if required.

The Result

EXgarde has been used in a wide range of projects, delivering outstanding access and integrated security systems management. The EXgarde V3 is unrivalled in its integration capabilities and provides the managers at Southmead with a flexible and dynamic platform, capable of delivering seamless integration with a wide range of building systems – including intruder and fire detection. This allows for complete building and security management and so the potential for considerable resource savings, in terms of both time and custom is huge.