Work begins on £5m housing scheme

An artist's impression of Weavers Court.
An artist's impression of Weavers Court.

Work has now started on the development of a £5million state-of-the-art Extra Care housing development for older people in Alnwick.

When complete, Weavers Court will provide 58 one and two-bedroom apartments, with 30 available to buy through older person’s shared ownership and the remainder available to rent from social landlord Isos Housing.

Representatives from Isos Housing, Northumberland County Council, Northumberland Estates, the Homes and Communities Agency (HCA) and Galliford Try Partnerships North attended a ground-breaking ceremony today at the site, off Weavers Way to the south of the town, to mark the official start of the development.

The development is being built by Galliford Try Partnerships North and aims to promote independence in older and vulnerable people. It will enable those with chronic and other health conditions to live in the community and could also help prevent admissions to residential care.

The scheme has received more than £1.9million from the Department of Health’s Extra Care Housing fund and is part of a national programme where the Department of Health has allocated funding to build 3,544 new homes. The fund is managed and delivered by the Homes and Communities Agency.

Michael Farr, executive director of development and property at Isos Housing, said: “Today marks a major milestone in the construction of this exciting new development, which will provide high-quality homes for local people in Alnwick and Northumberland.

“Isos has a strong track record of delivering high-quality development programmes and after our successful Extra Care development of The Manors, in Prudhoe, we are setting very high standards for specialist housing for older people across the region.

“I would like to thank all partners involved in this project to get to this stage and I am really looking forward to seeing this fantastic new development when we unveil it to residents next year.”

Coun Allan Hepple, policy board member responsible for housing at Northumberland County Council, said: “Providing and supporting the development of homes to suit all needs in Northumberland is one of the council’s key priorities. I am very pleased to see this facility get started on site. When complete it will provide a unique set of services for older people, meeting housing, care and support needs.”

Colin Barnes, director at The Northumberland Estates, said: “We think Weavers Court will be a great success – it represents a major investment in the town, creating much-needed high-quality care and community facilities.

“It is an important first phase of development to the south of the town which will include the new high school, family housing and sports facilities.”

The one and two-bedroom apartments at Weavers Court will be available on older person’s shared ownership basis where you can buy a share in the property on a part-buy, part-rent basis. Purchasers can buy a 75 per cent share in the property and must be aged 55 and over and have a housing or recognised care need. Prices range from £93,750 for a maximum 75 per cent share in a one-bedroom apartment or £103,125 for the same share on a two-bedroom apartment. Additional service charges will apply.

The scheme is expected to be completed in early 2016 and anyone interested in buying or renting an apartment at Weavers Court should contact the Home Ownership team at Isos Housing on 0191 223 88 88 or visit www.weavers-court.com