Dovecote Meadow up for prestigious award
A new housing development for people aged 55 and over in Sunderland has been shortlisted for a prestigious award.
Dovecote Meadow, an Extra Care scheme on Ford Estate, has been shortlisted for the 2015 Housing Innovation Awards, in the Most Innovative Affordable Housing Scheme category.
Designed and built in partnership with Sunderland City Council, developers Keepmoat and Housing & Care 21, Dovecote Meadow provides 175 apartments and is the largest scheme in a wider programme of development of housing for older people in the city.
Bruce Moore, Housing & Care 21’s Chief Executive, said: “Dovecote Meadow has already established strong links with the local community and has become something of a focal point.
“Residents are able to live independent lives with care available as they need it, surrounded by a supportive and active community.
“We are very pleased to have been shortlisted and are looking forward to finding out whether or not we have won in February.”
Dovecote Meadow has revitalized a site formerly occupied by a derelict school. Facilities open to the community at the development include a hairdressers, beauty therapy centre and a restaurant, with a convenience store opening soon.
Councillor Paul Watson, the Leader of Sunderland City Council, said: “It is great to see investment into Ford Estate which benefits some of our most vulnerable local people.
“Dovecote Meadow has been a huge success providing modern apartment living and allowing people to downsize and maintain their independence at home.
“It has also brought significant employment and training opportunities alongside the important links and opportunities it is providing to community groups and social enterprise.
“This award nomination is recognition of all the work that progressed the development and another example of the partnerships that are being forged across the city and benefitting all residents.”
The largest development of its type undertaken by Housing & Care 21, it is split over three levels. The design of the building aims to promote a sense of community among residents, avoiding long corridors and providing easy access to all communal areas.
Housing & Care 21 provides the care services on site, according to the agreed needs of the residents. Levels of care support provided range from none to specialist dementia care.
Most of the Dovecote Meadow residents come from the surrounding estate, having moved from housing that no longer met their social or health needs. This has helped forge strong links between the new scheme and the estate community.
Integration with the local community is further supported by Housing & Care 21’s partnership work with social enterprises and voluntary organisations. For example, we worked with Foundations CIC, which supports people, many of whom have a disability or disadvantaged background, develop sustainable skills and return to work, to provide catering services for the scheme. The Alzheimer’s Society has provided day care services from the scheme and work is ongoing to establish a convenience store on site and integrate volunteers and befriending services into the scheme.