Planning approval for Huntingdon care home on former Medway site

The Medway Centre in Huntingdon will be demolished to make way for a care home.

The Medway Centre in Huntingdon will be demolished to make way for a care home. - Credit: Archant

A new care home which has just been given the go-ahead on the site of the Medway Centre in Huntingdon will meet a “pressing need”, the operators have said.

Approval for the 60-bedroom home has just been given to the Berkley Care Group by Huntingdonshire District Council.

The redundant community centre, on a 1.6 acre site in Medway Road, was being sold by Huntingdon Town Council with a price tag of just short of £1m, to help fund the construction of its replacement, the Coneygear Centre at nearby Coneygear Park.

Permission for the redevelopment includes the demolition of the existing public hall and its replacement with the new care home.

Planners acting for the Berkley Care Group said in their application: “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 (CQC), will offer state-of-the-art facilities and will operate to the highest care standards. 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.”

Planners said the average age of residents would be around 85 to 90 years and they would move in when they or their carers were no longer able to look after them in their own homes.

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The scheme would also be “delivering care accommodation to meet a recognised and growing need in Huntingdon, while increasing housing choice in the community” and provide jobs for local people, including both part-time and full-time positions.

The district council said the harmful impacts of the home were “very limited” adding: “Regarding the social dimension, the site appears to have no physical constraints and is deliverable.

“There is a local and district wide identified need for specialist housing. The proposal would help to meet that need on a local level and the wider needs of the district.”

The Medway Centre was built more than 40 years ago to serve the Oxmoor area of the town and became a popular venue for a range of groups and organisations.