Groundbreaking ceremony celebrates start on site at pioneering housing scheme for the over-60s in Longhill

Groundbreaking ceremony celebrates start on site at pioneering housing scheme for the over-60s in Longhill

A groundbreaking ceremony has taken place on an exciting new development of 15 bungalows for the over-60s in Longhill.

Pickering and Ferens Homes is delighted to now be starting on site with a pioneering new scheme, after securing £585,000 of funding from The Department of Health.

Key partners came together to celebrate the start of construction work on the site at Weaver Grove and Larne Road, in east Hull, which will provide purpose-built accommodation for the over-60s in Longhill once complete in March 2015.

Designed by Hull-based architects Gammond Evans Crichton, the development will be built by Hobson and Porter – the firm was appointed following a formal tender process. Tom Hogan, chair, of Pickering and Ferens Homes, said: “I am really pleased that we are now starting on site with this innovative scheme, which has been carefully designed to meet the needs of the over-60s.

“Ours was one of seven successful funding bids in the Humber region and it’s a really positive step forward for Pickering and Ferens Homes that we, with our partner Hull City Council, are playing such a key role in the provision of housing of this nature.

“This development sees Pickering and Ferens Homes providing older people with even more opportunities to live in purpose-built accommodation at the heart of a local community which is in desperate need of properties that are on one level.”

Councillor John Black, ward councillor for Longhill and a trustee of Pickering and Ferens Homes, said: “It is a privilege for me, as both a ward councillor for the area and a trustee of Pickering and Ferens Homes, to be involved in the ceremony to mark the start of this development. There is a real shortage of this type of accommodation for older people in the Longhill area and I am sure these new homes will be really welcomed by local residents there. Pickering and Ferens Homes has an excellent reputation for providing this type of accommodation and I am sure these properties will be very popular.”

Pat Norfolk, a resident trustee for Pickering and Ferens Homes, lives in one of the bungalows in Sherwood Court, Bilton. She was thrilled to be part of the ceremony at the development in Longhill, which is very close to her heart: “I was part of a steering group which helped to make some valuable improvements in Longhill, such as getting the community centre up and running. Around seven years ago we opened a forum to ask residents what their community really needed – and the vote was unanimously in favour of bungalows. This new development is long-awaited and it’s wonderful to see it finally happen.”

Dave Blades, a director at Hobson and Porter, added: “Hobson and Porter is delighted to have been selected as part of a local team to deliver this pioneering purpose-built, high quality, innovative scheme. It is always pleasing to secure contracts in this area enabling us to support our local supply chain.”

This development is supported by the Care and Support Specialised Housing Fund, announced by the Department of Health in 2012. The main aim of the fund is to support and accelerate the development of the specialised housing market, recognising a national shortfall of housing which enables vulnerable people to live independently.

Over five years, the Department of Health is making available £160m capital funding for specialist housing providers to bring forward proposals for development of specialist housing to meet the needs of older people and adults with disabilities.