Oakhaven redevelopment – contractor announced

The Council has announced that Ashley House PLC will develop and operate an Extra Care elderly persons facility which will be built on the Oakhaven site on Acomb Road.

Ashley House generally get good inspection reports for their homes.

The deal – agreed at a behind closed doors decision session – also secures for the Council nomination rights to affordable and discount sale apartments for the next  80 years.

There will be 48 one bedroomed and 8 two bedroomed homes provided on the site

Of these

Oakhaven

  • 20 will be for affordable rent,
  • 5 shared ownership,
  • 15 at market rent and
  • 16 outright sale.

The development will include a lounge, cafe/restaurant, buggy store and staff rooms plus 16 car park spaces.

The one bedroomed properties will be rented for £241 a week and the 2 bedroomed properties for £266. The target sale price for the properties is between £165000 and £195,000.

The developer will pay the Council £150,000 for the land.

If the adjacent Police station becomes available, the developer say he will provide an additional 14 apartments on that part of the site.

Further details can be found by clicking here

Carlton Tavern

Coincidentally, the owners of the nearby Carlton Tavern public house have today announced its closure. They are understood to have sold the site to “Crown Care” who will develop a similar care facility.

The Oakhaven proposals are tied up with controversial plans to develop the Lowfields school site.

At Lowfields, government officials have said that they may not be able to intervene to stop the sale and development of the playing fields “if they have not been used for over 10 years”.

York Council officials claim that Lowfields/High School pupils last used the  sports field in September 1997. In reality it was much later than that.

Meanwhile there is considerable confusion about whether the North Yorkshire police can afford to move their Acomb Police Station onto the Lowfields site, while the NHS has confirmed that no funding has been made available for the promised health centre which was also to have been built there.

A communal housing group has meanwhile announced two “public meetings” to discuss their plans for a small section of the Lowfields Site. Yorspace was allocated a site near little Tudor Road by the Councils Executive although the financial terms of any deal are not yet known. Their allocated site is not on the school playing field as such, although they apparently lobbied for the whole of the school campus to be developed (bringing them into potential conflict with the “Save Lowfields Playing Field” action group which was formed in the autumn) .

The meetings are being held on:

  • 11 March – Foxwood Community Centre, Cranfield Pl, York YO24 3HY, 3pm 
  • 15 March – Chill Cafe, 8a Front St, Acomb, York YO24 3BJ, 7pm

 

 

Oakhaven on York Road to become homeless hostel

Oakhaven

Oakhaven

The York Council has finally an admitted that the former Oakhaven elderly persons’ home will be turned into homeless person’s accommodation.

No external alterations are proposed to the building and internal changes are minimal. Currently the property has 27 bedrooms. The proposal is to change it to 10 one bed flats and 5 two bed flats.

Oakhaven has been empty – apart from some police training use – since it was closed last year.

The Council had talked euphemistically about the buildings being used to “house local families”. It turns out that the flats will replace the Ordnance Lane facility which is being demolished. Those units cater for homeless families and some individuals.  Occasionally they have housed teenagers on remand.

There are already two buildings being used to house homeless people in this part of the City (Holgate Road and Howe Hill)

Inevitably there are problems with any transient use. Noise and chaotic lifestyles do not always sit well with quieter neighbourhoods  or – in the case of the Front Street area – a recovering shopping precinct.

Most homeless families, of course, simply want to be moved a permanent home as quickly as possible. That should be the Council’s main target.

The Council’s planning committee is being recommended to approve the use of the building as a homeless hostel  for up to 18 months.

The Council has said that in 2018 it will build an extra care elderly people’s facility on the site.

The same Council department recently reneged on its promise to redevelop only 50% of the Lowfields school site

Temporary accomodation plan for Acomb elderly persons home site

Acomb residents invited to Oakhaven redevelopment event

Oakhaven

Oakhaven

Residents and businesses in the Acomb Road area of the city are being invited to find out more about the short and long term plans for the redevelopment of the former Oakhaven Older People’s Home next week (Tuesday 28 June).

The Councils plans for the Lowfields school site are expected to be published tomorrow

The council’s longer term plans for the site will see the creation of a new Extra Care facility for older people in the Acomb area: part of the authority’s Older People’s Accommodation Project which aims to secure high quality accommodation to meet the needs of York’s ageing population.

If approved, the flexible accommodation will enable residents, including those with complex care needs such as dementia, to live independently in their own homes on the site, with on-site personal care available 24 hours a day, seven days a week, should they need it.

The authority will shortly begin the process to find a partner to develop the facility at Oakhaven and in 2017 will seek planning consent for the new building.

In the immediate short term, the council is proposing to use the building as accommodation for up to 15 local families and individuals who need temporary accommodation. The facility will be managed by on-site staff seven days a week and the proposals will be subject to planning consent.

Local residents are being invited to attend the drop-in event next Tuesday (21 June) at Oakhaven between 4-7pm to find out more about the short and long term plans for the site.

Visit www.york.gov.uk/OPAplans for more information.

Firearms training taking place in Oakhaven former elderly persons home

Council “forgets” to mention Lowfields school site in new social care report

All residents have now been moved out of the Oakhaven elderly people’s home in York Road.  The Council says that there will be a “delay” before work starts on building a specialist Extra Care facility on the site.

A report to a meeting next week says

Bunholme "hub" layout. click to enlarge

Bunholme “hub” layout. click to enlarge

“we have closed down Oakhaven: shutting off water and gas so that all is safe (but leaving on the electricity so that the fire and security systems continue to operate) and moving out equipment for reuse elsewhere, if in reasonable condition, or for disposal.

The building will then stand empty while we procure a partner to redevelop it as an Extra Care facility. While it is empty we have offered its use as a temporary kitchen while Poppleton Road school kitchens are refurbished and for fire arms and dog training by North Yorkshire Police [no live ammunition]”.

Residents may be sceptical about just how long the site will remain derelict. The Oliver House saga dragged on for three years (and counting) while the former Lowfields school site – ideal as a location for accommodation for elderly residents because it is close to amenities – hasn’t even been put on the market yet.

Another elderly person’s home (Grove House) is being sold off.

The Council seems to be concentrating all its resource son the east of the City with the Burnholme school site set to be turned into a well-being hub. (see above right)

The Council is now consulting on the closure of Morrell House (Burton Stone Lane), Willow House (Long Close Lane), Windsor House (Ascot Way) and Woolnough House (Woolnough Ave)

York Road Oakhaven older persons home plans announced

Will be replaced with an “extra care” facility.
Oakhaven site plan - clckc to enlarge

Oakhaven site plan – click to enlarge

Following a public consultation exercise, the Council is being recommended to go ahead with the conversion of the Oakhaven care home site on York Road into an “extra care” facility.

The City is gearing up to meet an expected 50% increase in the number of residents who will be aged over 75 by 2030.

This forms part of the Council’s plan to provide, by the end of 2018, 525 new units of accommodation of which 343 will serve those with high care needs including dementia.  “225 out of date care beds will be replaced”.

Another home – Grove House on Penleys Grove Street – will also be closed. That site will be sold in order to finance the improvements at other facilities for the elderly.

A report, being considered on Thursday, acknowledges that most “extra care” facilities are located on the east of the Ouse. However it fails to recognise the demand for more accommodation for elderly people on the Lowfields school site.

Instead in a separate report the Council is being asked to develop such facilities at the Burnholme school site.

Report fails to recognise the demand to establish more accommodation for elderly people on the Lowfields school site

Report fails to recognise the need for more accommodation for elderly people on the Lowfields school site, which has been left empty and derelict by the Council for over 3 years.

On Lowfields the report says, “The use of the Lowfields site for specialist accommodation with care for older people has been the subject of previous procurement which concluded that such development was unaffordable. However, we continue to examine the use of this site to meet housing, health and care objectives”.

Which means officials have made no progress on marketing the site?

The Oakhaven replacement will provide only 50 of the 525 beds needed to satisfy demand in the City

 The papers reveal that the Council will not run the replacement facility at Oakhaven.

Instead it will seek a “partner” to fund, build and operate the extra care scheme. The Council is also relying on another private sector home being constructed at the Terry’s factory site (which received planning permission last week).

It will also sell off the Windsor House home in Ascot Way.

The consultation exercise concluded, “That 97% of questionnaire respondents agreed that bigger bedrooms, en-suite facilities, wider corridors and more social space should be key features of residential care homes. Bigger bedrooms give more social space for residents to entertain visitors, they can accommodate the resident’s own furniture and bigger rooms give staff more space in which to work and support residents, particularly where bed hoists need to be used”.

Work on the Oakhaven Extra care home is expected to start in early 2017 and may be available for occupation in May 2018.

Given the Council’s shambolic record on project management, we doubt if we will see any improvements much before the end of the decade.

Oakhaven old peoples home to be converted into extra care facility

Residents and staff at two of City of York Council’s Older People’s Homes – Grove House and Oakhaven – are being consulted on proposals to close the homes in early 2016, as part of plans to modernise accommodation for older people in the city.

There has still not been any announcement by the Council on the future of the Lowfields site.  Residents had expected to be given a redevelopment timetable over the summer.

Oakhaven

Oakhaven

The plans seek to address the needs of York’s ageing population, making the best use of York’s existing Sheltered Housing by making it more accessible for people with higher care needs, and replacing the council’s seven out-dated Older People’s Homes, with more modern accommodation. Two Older People’s Homes – Oliver House and Fordlands – closed in 2012 as part of the programme.

The council’s Executive agreed to consult on proposals to close two more Older People’s Homes as part of the next phase of the project at their meeting on 30 July. Each of the council’s seven remaining Older People’s Homes was assessed against a number of criteria, to determine which homes should be consulted on for closure first.
(more…)

All existing York Council Elderly Persons Homes set to close before 2019

£2 million price tag put on Lowfields site – Future of playing fields unclear.

Labours plans to abandon the super care home project mean that 7 existing elderly persons homes will close:

  • Grove House,
  • Haxby Hall,
  • Morrell House,
  • Oakhaven,
  • Windsor House,
  • Willow House and
  • Woolnough House.

All will close by March 2019.  The first will close its doors next year.

The Council expects many of the occupants to move into homes provided by the “independent sector”

Houses will be built on most of the vacated sites.

It is proposed that the Lowfields site be used for the provision of “over 100 new homes” including “downsizing” homes to rent and buy for older people as well as “starter homes to rent and buy so that younger families can get on to the housing ladder”.  

The Council says that a capital receipt of “at least £2m” for the land will also be realised, confirming that any redevelopment will be by the private sector.

Whether the playing fields are included in this purchase price is unclear

Oakhaven

Oakhaven

It is proposed that the “facilities for older people originally envisaged as part of the Community Village on the Lowfields site be, instead, provided at a newly built Extra Care and Health Hub which is expected to replace the Oakhaven OPH on “Front Street” (sic)”.

The Council says it

will be on making best use of the existing stock of Extra Care Housing in the city.  There are five dedicated sheltered housing with ‘extra care’ services in York containing 205 units of accommodation.

Four of these are Council managed schemes – Marjorie Waite Court, Gale Farm Court, Barstow House and Glen Lodge, whilst the fifth (Auden House) is managed by York Housing Association. All homes in these schemes are to rent”.

The Council claims that many of those occupying places in these homes don’t need “extra care” facilities and hints that they may be moved out to make way for those judged to have higher needs!

They say, “We will work with exiting residents to keep disruption to a minimum

The report concludes,

York is also under-supplied with Extra Care Housing given the city’s demographics and the anticipated growth in the numbers of over 75s expected over the next decade.

Analysis suggests that there will be need for 490 units of Extra Care accommodation by 2020, rising to 645 in 2030, based upon nation benchmarks. There is a need for both Extra Care to rent and Extra Care to buy; currently just one third of the provision in York is to buy despite 81% of York’s older residents owning their own home.

The independent sector is beginning to address this need. For example, McCarthy & Stone are currently building 28 new sheltered homes to buy at Smithson Court on Top Lane in Copmanthorpe. Elsewhere in Yorkshire they are beginning to build and provide their Extra Care offer – called Assisted Living – and we would expect that they will continue to provide new accommodation as the market demands”.

With the overcrowding in York NHS hospitals reaching crisis point over the last few months, partly as a result of a lack of availability of the right kind of care places for the elderly in the City, the prospect of another 4 years elapsing before the issues are resolved is deeply worrying.