Innovative independent living homes opened in Ludlow

New Independent Living homes have been officially opened marking the end of a nearly 2 year build by South Shropshire Housing Association (SSHA) to provide homes for older people in Ludlow.

Opening the scheme was Cllr Lee Chapman, portfolio holder for Adult Services, Health and Housing at Shropshire Council.

The £2.7m new homes consist of 22 apartments and 4 bungalows that are designed to the 10 HAPPI principles that ensure good natural light, room to move around, storage and ventilation, shared facilities and a natural environment which benefits the residents and makes retirement living a positive experience.

The apartments benefit from being dual aspect to maximize natural light, and each have an enclosed balcony that has room for a table and chairs to enjoy the view of the communal gardens.

Other features include generous space inside for flexible living, power sockets are placed at half height, within easy reach, and external charging points for electric scooters.

Beech Gardens is built on the site of maisonettes, the keys for which now form a plaque near the entrance of the new homes, which was designed by Pedro Chacon-Senra, a Year 5 student from Ludlow Junior School.

His was the winning design was chosen by residents from the nearby Whitefriars Independent Living housing, which will share its communal facilities with the new Beech Gardens residents.

Two of the bungalows are set aside for Shropshire Council’s ‘step down’ initiative, which provides accommodation for those unable to return to their homes after a stay in hospital, due to the need for alternative accommodation or the provision of adaptations to their homes.

Cllr Lee Chapman said: “This is truly an innovative independent living scheme which allows residents to live independently for longer.

“With the flexible living space and ‘care ready’ features, it really shows that there is an alternative to the standard model of the retirement housing provision.”

Jake Berriman, Deputy Chief Executive at Connexus, of which SSHA is a part, said: “Connexus continues to look at new housing innovations in terms of providing attractive and comfortable homes for our residents to live in.

“The HAPPI model applied to this Independent Living scheme has achieved our standard and we hope our residents will be happy in their new homes.”