St Ives residents defeated in fight to keep sheltered housing scheme

Langley Close, St Ives, residents Face Eviction, Kathleen Jolley, Margaret McDermott, Kathleen Green

Langley Close, St Ives, residents Face Eviction, Kathleen Jolley, Margaret McDermott, Kathleen Green, Joy Brooks, Daphne Gifford, Terry Hemington, Anne-Marie Keene, and Tony Parker. - Credit: Archant

Luminus will submit plans for its £7million redevelopment of a St Ives sheltered housing scheme by the end of the year after securing a £5m loan from Huntingdonshire District Council (HDC).

As expected, HDC’s cabinet agreed on Thursday to offer Luminus a loan to help fund the demolition of Langley Court and replace it with an extra-care facility. The social landlord had already secured a £2.3m grant from the Homes and Communities Association.

The loan includes a number of caveats, including offering current residents a chance to move back in once the work is completed. HDC says it offers protection to the residents who want to stay.

The loan is also made subject to Luminus obtaining planning permission.

Since Luminus announced the redevelopment on July 25, residents have fought to stay in their Langley Court homes and have lobbied councillors at every level for their support and have presented petitions to district and county councillors.

HDC executive leader Councillor Jason Ablewhite said: “With the conditions on the loan we will impose, I am satisfied we have provided a way forward that balances the need for this enhanced and increased provision, while allowing those who wish to return every opportunity to do so.”

Luminus chief executive Chan Abraham added: “While Luminus looks forward to providing St Ives with some modern extra care homes for elderly people, we don’t want to lose sight of how difficult things have been for our current residents and we are committed to maintain our support for them.”

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Work could begin in May.

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