£20m to improve sheltered housing

Wealden’s Cabinet has approved an ongoing programme of re-investment in its Sheltered Housing Schemes which will see nearly £20 million in improvements over the next 10 years.

“Our sheltered schemes provide essential housing options for our local residents. They are the hidden jewel in our housing crown, but in some cases they are in need of modernisation. The type of bedsit accommodation provided in a few schemes is no longer popular so we will need to remodel the layout of existing homes with the potential to rebuild where modernisation is not practical. Now we have a self-financing Housing Revenue Account, we are able to plan a long term programme to ensure we continue to provide the most suitable accommodation in the future,” said Councillor Graham Wells, Wealden Cabinet Member for Housing and Asset Management.

“It is important that we plan ahead to avoid any unnecessary disruption by making use of the available space in our neighbouring schemes. With a steady increase in the elderly population, we are taking a long term view so we can provide the most suitable schemes for the future. Extensive consultation will be carried out with residents before any rebuilding work takes place.

“We hope to begin the programme next year but only after residents who may be affected have been suitably relocated.”

Research locally and nationally shows that older people are looking for more space when seeking accommodation as well as good access to local transport and amenities.

The £19.8 million improvement programme was approved by Wealden’s Cabinet on January 29.