Biggest build of new council homes in three decades open in Northampton

A five million pound development has seen a former care home in Northampton converted into 45 new council houses for older people.

Wednesday, 6th March 2019, 3:36 pm
Updated Wednesday, 6th March 2019, 5:00 pm
Northampton Partnership Homes, who manage Northampton Borough Councils housing services, are currently supporting eligible residents with their move into the new apartments in Lakeview.

Building work began in 2016 to convert an area of land in Boothville - formerly a vacant care home - into Lakeview House, which was unveiled on Friday (March 1), after a five million pound development managed by Northampton Partnership Homes.

The new development boasts 45 accessible council homes, which includes wheelchair friendly apartments as part of a 'bright and welcoming' design scheme chosen by residents in the area.

Colin York, a boot maker with roots in the Northampton shoe industry, is one resident getting ready to move in. He said: “I work five days a week and have rented privately for so long.

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Colin York is getting ready to move into his new home.

"I’m 62 this year, I wanted somewhere nice and quiet where I can settle down.

"There are a few people I haven’t seen for years who are moving in too."

Lakeview residents have campaigned for many years for older persons housing in the area.

In 2013 the site had been subject to a number of planning applications including a temporary night shelter.

Northampton North MP Michael Ellis attended the official opening ceremony on Friday with residents.

The new apartments will soon be opening its doors to older residents, over the age of 55 from the council’s housing register.

Pat Green used to work in the Londis shop next door to the former care home at Lakeview. Her mother Margaret, aged 87, is one of the residents who will shortly be moving into one of the brand new homes.

She said: “I used to go to the care home when it was there and help the people with orders from the shop. It had a great atmosphere. It only seems like yesterday.

“People are proud these days and I like the fact they have their own home at Lakeview but there is help if needed in the background.

"It’s the best place for mum and I think it will bring out the best in her. It’s a lovely building. They seem to have really researched what people want and need. It is well thought out."

Lakeview House has independent apartments but there are communal facilities by way of a lounge, mobility scooter store as well as garden; and a community alarm system that if needed, summons assistance via a remote contact centre 24 hours a day.

Mike Kay, chief executive at Northampton Partnership Homes said: “During the planning stages, our staff consulted with over 700 people in the area and met with residents at the local community hub to talk about the plans and take on board their views.

"We’re really pleased with the feedback we’ve received from residents and the possibilities this new project has brought.

"The work with ENGIE (regeneration specialists) has brought a scheme of secure housing to a growing number of older people across Northampton."