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Housing plan for site of care home

By MIG: Leek Post and Times  |  Posted: October 16, 2013

Lightwood Care Home in Cheadle

Lightwood Care Home in Cheadle

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A FORMER care home in the centre of a market town could be demolished and the site redeveloped into affordable housing.

 

Ascent Housing, which is a joint venture between Staffordshire Moorlands District Council and Your Housing Group to build more than 400 affordable units across the Moorlands, is looking at purchasing the Lightwood Care Home site in Well Street, Cheadle.

The former care home, pictured, which is owned by Staffordshire County Council, was controversially closed in 2008.

Councillor Gill Burton, who has the responsibility for housing at the district council, said: “It is an option that Ascent will be working with Staffordshire County Council at looking to develop the Lightwood site for affordable housing.”

Despite welcoming moves to do something with the site, several Cheadle councillors said that promises were made when the care home was closed to redevelop the premises into an extra care site.

Councillor Ron Locker said: “We were promised extra care facilities to replace the Lightwood site when it closed.

“Many care homes are closing, so where do people go for these facilities? “Ascent Housing has spoken to several Cheadle councillors, as they are hoping to acquire the land.

“Everyone agrees it is better to see it developed than leave it has it is, but we need pressure to be made for the care facilities we were promised in the town.”

District and town councillor Peter Elkin also said that Ascent was looking to obtain ownership of the former Lightwood Care Home site.

He said: “We were promised extra care housing facilities when there was a fight to keep Lightwood open.

“The site is terribly run down. I personally think it is sad when the care homes are closed, but this site is getting worse and worse.” Cheadle town mayor Ian Plant said: “When Lightwood Care Home closed, extra care facilities were promised – but the county council has not delivered.

“We have put items regarding extra care facilities to our MP Bill Cash. These include the closure of Lightwood, Weaver House remaining empty and the future of The Newlands.

“We have now been told to write a letter outlining our concerns to Mr Cash so he can take them forward.

“We seem to be losing everything in Cheadle. It seems the district council wants to build at Lightwood because they have to have smaller properties for people to move into because of the so called ‘bedroom tax’ affecting people with spare bedrooms.”

Cheadle councillor Stephen Ellis said he really welcomed the fact Ascent was looking at the site with a vision to build yet more affordable homes.

He said: “Based on our successful track record as a district, we’ve been leading the way in securing funding for such schemes to support local people.

“The Lightwood site has been a problem since the home closed, especially with anti-social behaviour.

“Bringing the site back into use can only be a good thing for local residents and the wider community.”

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