Songs and celebrations at scheme opening
The first of five housing schemes built as the result of a ground-breaking partnership deal that has provided more than 200 homes in the county - with housing management provided by West Kent Housing Association - is now officially open for business.
Copperfields in Ramsgate is an extra care scheme delivered as part of the Kent Excellent Homes for All private finance initiative.
It was officially opened on 7 February by Graham Gibbens, Cabinet Member for Adult Social Care and Public Health at Kent County Council, and Mayor of Ramsgate Cllr Trevor Shonk, who jointly unveiled a plaque before inviting guests to tour the impressive new building.
Other guests at the event, which began with a song and handbell ringing by some of the residents, included our own Chief Executive, Frank Czarnowski, and Cllr Lin Fairbrass, Deputy Leader and Cabinet Member for Community Services at Thanet District Council.
Copperfields reflects the commitment of a partnership that brings together Kent County Council, Thanet District Council, Dalmore Capital, Galliford Try and West Kent.
Kent Excellent Homes for All is a £100 million scheme that has provided 218 extra care apartments across five schemes for people over the age of 55 with a social care need. Two more schemes providing supported accommodation for vulnerable adults take the total number of homes to 238.
Copperfields – like the other four schemes – provides independent living but with care available from an on-site team if needed. As well as spacious apartments, residents benefit from facilities including a restaurant, bar, lounge, laundry, gym/dance studio, hair salon and activities/computer suite. The communal facilities will be available for hire by local groups.
The apartments are large and well equipped, and all five of the new buildings are fully wheelchair accessible, with good storage for mobility scooters.
To help residents who may have dementia and to make a positive difference to their lives, a number of features have been introduced, including a ‘memory box’ outside each apartment to allow residents to make their front door unique.
There are different coloured carpets and contrasting styles of artwork for each floor of the building, all designed to help residents navigate their new surroundings.
The scheme was built by Galliford Try Partnerships, with housing management by West Kent and full facilities maintenance provided by Galliford Try Facilities Management under a 25-year contract.
Copperfields has 25 one-bedroomed apartments and 24 two-bedroomed, each with a spacious lounge, kitchen and accessible bathroom with level access shower. Each one has either a patio or a balcony.
We are keen to encourage residents to lead active lives and a number of clubs and events have already been introduced, including a choir, a hand bell-ringing group and a gardening club, as well as regular bingo sessions.
Picture - "Cheers!" Resident Vicki Williams and her sister Doreen Snowden raise a glass to the success of Copperfields