Milestone for specialist housing scheme

The development of Beeches Manor in Wokingham has reached a key construction milestone. Housing 21’s new specialist dementia care and supported living housing development has reached the ‘topping out’ phase, with the last tile being placed on the roof.

To mark the occasion, guests representing the project partners visited the site to witness the laying of the final tile and to see how work is progressing on the £3.8 million development. They were also among the first to receive a copy of ‘Creating Better Living Environments for People with Dementia’, Housing 21’s new dementia design guide.

Joining Housing 21 at the site in Reading Road were Wokingham Borough Council, the Homes and Communities Agency (HCA), Willmott Dixon and Quattro Design Architects.  The exciting new scheme will provide 18 purpose-built apartments for people with dementia and eight apartments for people with learning disabilities. There will also be staff accommodation on site and two guest rooms for visitors.

Wokingham Borough Council Leader Cllr David Lee, said:  “I’m really excited to see the development taking shape. Beeches Manor is a really innovative scheme for the borough and will be much more than just bricks and mortar, it will provide vulnerable people with modern, high quality homes in a safe environment, close to the facilities on offer in the town centre".

David Williams, head of strategy development for Housing 21, said: “It’s fantastic to see how the development is progressing. Once complete, Beeches Manor will enable the residents to enjoy independent living. Those with dementia will also benefit from 24 hour on-site care.”

The Beeches Manor development is a Wokingham Borough Council initiative and the project has also received £1.8M investment from the Homes and Communities Agency.

The unique design of Beeches Manor draws on best practice evidence and incorporates both internal and external garden areas, which are known to promote wellbeing. Along with communal facilities including lounge, kitchens and activity rooms, the scheme also features assistive technology solutions.

Tim Carpenter, managing director, Willmott Dixon said: “The topping out means we are nearing the final straight in the construction process. Beeches Manor is a fantastic development we are all very proud to be associated with it at Willmott Dixon.”

Mike Court, architect with Quattro Design Architects said: "Integrated into its woodland setting, the innovative design of Beeches Manor clustered around two central courtyards offers independent living for residents with dementia and learning difficulties whilst bringing natural ventilation, daylight and the surrounding landscape into the heart of the highly sustainable scheme."

The new development is due to be completed next spring.