Plans for new care homes in Huntingdon and St Neots could create scores of jobs

The care home is planned for the Medway Centre site

The care home is planned for the Medway Centre site - Credit: Archant

A 60-room care home planned for the former site of a community centre in Huntingdon will be an “exemplar” in term of the facilities it will offer, developers have said.

Berkley Care Group, which is behind the scheme, said there was a “pressing need” for elderly care provision in the area.

If it gets the go-ahead, the home would replace the redundant Medway Centre, which was owned by Huntingdon Town Council, and would create 40 full time and a further 40 part time jobs.

The Medway Centre opened in 1979 to serve the local community and could hold around 150 people - but the council declared the hall to be no longer fit for purpose and built the £1m Coneygeare Centre on a nearby site instead, opening it in February, just before the coronavirus lockdown.

Berkley Care currently has five homes in operation and a further six at the construction or planning stage.

In an outline planning application, submitted to Huntingdonshire District Council, it said: “The scheme will be an exemplar in terms of the standard of facilities and the provision of support and care.”

It said the building would offer 24-hour on-site care, en-suite bathrooms and communal facilities including a hairdressers, cinema room, lounges and quiet areas, some of which would be open to community groups. There would also be on-site kitchen and laundry facilities, with landscaped outside areas featuring sensory gardens.

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The firm said: “The subject site has been identified to address a pressing need for elderly care provision in the local area and the characteristics of the site lend themselves favourably to the proposed use, being within an established residential area close to local services and amenities.

“The new care home, which will be registered with the Care Quality Commission, will offer state of the art facilities and will operate to the highest care standards.”

The application added: “It will provide 24-hour support and care for the frail elderly, meeting a full range of residential, nursing and dementia care needs, including end of life and palliative services.”

An outline application for an 80-room care home has also been made by Lawrence Land Ltd on a commercial site at 205-207 Cambridge Street, St Neots, near the Spar shop and the junction with Cromwell Road.

This scheme will create 80 full time and 40 part time jobs if given the go-ahead.