19 October 2017
Work has begun on an £11m retirement village in Sherwood which will see two tower blocks for older residents enhanced and brand new extra care apartments and facilities created for Nottingham people.
As part of Nottingham City Homes and Nottingham City Council’s Building a Better Nottingham programme, Winchester and Woodthorpe Courts on Chestnut Walk will benefit from extensive refurbishment, including full external wall rendering, brand new windows, upgrades to the heating system, and sprinkler systems fitted to all communal areas and apartments.
Work, which is being carried out by appointed contractor, Willmott Dixon, has already begun on the brand new extra care scheme which will sit in between the two existing 15-storey blocks. The extra care scheme will include new communal facilities for all residents to use. Extra care schemes are designed to support older residents as they begin to feel the need for an extra level of support so they can remain living in their own home. The 44 individual apartments in the new scheme will allow residents to continue to live independently, but as their needs increase over time, so too can the level of care offered to them. This extra level of care will also be offered to residents in the existing blocks, as and when they are in need of it.
Collectively, the existing tower blocks and the new building will form a brand new retirement village, Winwood Heights. The village will contain over 224 one and two bedroom flats within three interconnected brand new or fully refurbished courts. Many flats have balconies and unparalleled views over Nottinghamshire and Woodthorpe Grange Park. Once work is completed, all homes will be highly energy efficient, meaning lower fuel bills and warm homes for residents. All new build flats will also be fully disability accessible.
Nick Murphy, Chief Executive of Nottingham City Homes, said: “The Building a Better Nottingham programme is transforming people’s lives across the city. We are improving the look and feel of our estates, as well as building energy efficient, sustainable homes, which can dramatically reduce fuel bills for our residents.
“The transformation of the tower blocks in Sherwood will offer huge benefits to our existing tenants and to many more older residents in the future, thanks to the construction of the extra care apartments and facilities. It will offer flexible care and support to enable older residents to continue to live independently.”
The existing tower blocks occupy a dominant position in the local skyline. Great care has been taken with the design of their refurbishment to improve their appearance, including the view from nearby Woodthorpe Park.
The ‘secure by design’ development will benefit from the support of an on-site care provider available at any time of the day or night, as well as including facilities such as an assisted bathing suite, communal facilities, such as a lounge and kitchen, a roof-top terrace, external garden seating area, dedicated mobility scooter store, laundry facilities and an on-site hairdresser.
Each resident will also have access to Nottingham City Homes’ independent living service, as well as a 24/7 connection to Nottingham On Call, the service that ensures help is on hand to respond in the case of a crisis at home.
Cllr Jane Urquhart, Portfolio Holder for Planning and Housing at Nottingham City Council, said: “We have an ageing population, and it’s important that when we’re transforming our neighbourhoods, we ensure the homes we are creating meet the needs of local people.
“From enhancing existing housing, to creating new homes across the city, we are committed to building a better Nottingham. I’m really looking forward to seeing this scheme move forward, and see the difference it makes to the existing residents and the local community.”
Throughout the planning process residents have been consulted, with a number of events giving them the chance to ask questions about the scheme. Some residents have already expressed an interest in the extra care scheme.
There is strong feeling of community at Winwood Heights, with a range of social activities on offer within the scheme and an abundance of local community based activities nearby providing a rich and varied social life to residents. It also has an active and vibrant tenant and residents association (TRA), led by its Chair, Jenny Thirtle-Denman. She said: “The great majority of residents here, have welcomed the plans for renovation. It is already a great place to live and when the proposed plans are completed , our homes will be even more attractive. The new integral social facility is eagerly awaited, as is the mobility scooter storage facility.
“Due to the ageing population, extra care accommodation is urgently needed, so the proposed new scheme is welcomed and will no doubt instil confidence in the future lives of many of the residents here. We have all been consulted on a regular basis and been very involved in the final plans, which has been appreciated by everyone. There are exciting times ahead!”