What is Extra Care Housing and how does it help people?
Extra Care Housing is specialist, high-quality accommodation designed for older people who need additional support and care to keep living independently. Each self-contained flat has its own front door and each development offers communal facilities with activities to encourage people to participate and develop a supportive community. An onsite care provider will support residents to maintain their health and wellbeing and staff are available 24 hours a day to respond to emergencies.
We know that with the right housing and the right care, in the right place, people are less likely to feel isolated or lonely, will live independently for longer, and are less likely to require hospital admission. Extra Care Housing delivers homes designed with care and support in mind, with facilities and staffing in place to help older people to live as independently as they wish.
Why is new Extra Care Housing accommodation needed?
Currently there is not enough affordable Extra Care Housing in Surrey. This means that many older people who can no longer live in their existing homes because of their needs, often end up having to move into a care home. With more Extra Care Housing available, older people can live long-term in a supportive and well-designed community.
How will the residents’ needs be supported?
Our Extra Care Housing will be:
• Designed so that residents can live their life their own way
• Created with our residents' future in mind
• Within the heart of the community
• Designed to support and promote our residents' independence.
SCC will commission care and support for each individual and this will include:
• Care – help with personal care and daily living tasks in the home
• Support – help to understand and maintain their tenancies, complete household tasks, look after their home, maintain and make use of external space for recreation, engage in social activities, link with the community and secure employment as appropriate
Does Extra Care Housing work well for people?
Extra Care Housing works well for many people. Surrey’s existing Extra Care Housing provision has provided accommodation with care and support for many older people over a number of years, enabling them to live as active members of their local communities.
• Extra Care Housing is designed to overcome challenges with our existing accommodation:
• changing resident expectations including high demand for self-contained flats which aren’t always readily available
• older properties which cannot accommodate changes to residents’ care and support needs over time e.g. for wheelchair accessibility and lifts; and
• the need for facilities that maintain privacy and dignity e.g. ensuite bath/shower rooms.
Is similar specialist accommodation available across Surrey?
The independent sector is building a limited number of new homes for older people, but they tend to be available on a market-led rental or leased ownership arrangement. This is why there is still insufficient affordable accommodation to meet demand.
With this development, SCC seeks to re-purpose and re-develop an SCC-owned site, to deliver against its large-scale ambitions for accommodation with care and support across Surrey so that everyone has a place they can call home, with appropriate housing for all.
Who is the housing for?
The accommodation is intended for older people in need of care and support to maintain their independence. Some may have a physical disability, sensory impairment or mental health needs. All potential residents will be assessed to confirm their suitability for Extra Care Housing and to ensure that their care and support needs can be met.
Will these homes be limited to Surrey residents?
Yes - individuals will need to have eligible care and support needs and be eligible for funding from SCC – so all will be deemed either to reside in Surrey or to have the right to reside in Surrey.
SCC will consider local connections and as far as possible support people to remain in their communities; however, the primary consideration will centre around offering accommodation that meets the needs of the individual.
How long will people live in the accommodation?
Extra Care Housing is designed to be flexible and adaptable, so that residents don’t have to move out of their homes if their needs change. Ideally with care and support, residents will be able to remain for the rest of their lives, and people will only have to consider moving into a care home when their care needs require on-site nursing input to be met.
Why was this location chosen?
This location matched Surrey County Council’s key selection criteria for an Extra Care Housing site:
• it’s within easy walking distance of amenities like shops, health services, libraries etc.
• it has good access to public transport routes, so residents and staff don’t have to be reliant on cars
• it balances locality with natural features which will benefit residents and visitors
Will all the homes be wheelchair accessible?
Yes – all of the accommodation has been designed to meet the latest Building Regulations standards for accessible, adaptable homes.
Will the building be secure? / How will the building be secured?
The development will follow Secured by Design principles for new homes with improvements to suit the specific needs of the residents, e.g. access controls, external security lighting and a video door entry system.
How much parking will there be / Where will visitors park?
Car parking arrangements will be tailored to meet the needs of the specific residents, staff and visitors.
Will there be electric vehicle charging points?
All parking bays will have electric charging points, designed to meet existing and future demand.
Will there be floodlights?
No - the external lighting has been designed to illuminate car parks, paths and gardens in a way that will encourage wildlife etc. whilst still maintaining safety and security for residents.
How many staff will be employed at the site?
This will be largely dependent on the needs of the residents. It’s likely that there will be 24hr support for residents with additional care workers attending at key times of day.
Will there be onsite carers?
Each resident will have their own care and support needs and a care package will be tailored to meet those needs for each individual. One or more care workers will be on site throughout the day and overnight; but it is not possible, at this early stage, to be precise as to staff numbers, attendance rotas and shift patterns as each will depend on the exact needs of the individuals - which may change over time.
Will carers come and go at all hours of the day and night?
Care workers will attend as needed to fulfil individual residents’ support plans. Activity is likely to be greater during the day. There will be peak times for activity, e.g. personal care and breakfast in the morning and dinner and personal care in the evening – but these peak activity periods are less likely to coincide with the school run, for example. Residents will also be out and about, participating in leisure activities and potentially employment, just like any other member of the community.
Overnight vehicular activity will be limited and care workers providing night cover will ordinarily remain on site 10pm - 7am. SCC will work with service providers to ensure that care worker resource is used effectively; and due regard given to minimising disturbance to neighbours, particularly at night.
Who will maintain the gardens?
A Housing/Estate manager will be appointed to maintain the landscaping and residents will be encouraged to participate in gardening as a leisure activity, should they wish to do so.
What is the timetable for the planning application?
Following completion of the Community Consultation process, SCC anticipate submitting an outline planning application at the end of 2022.
How will I know when the planning application has been made?
After this consultation has closed, a notice will be placed on the homepage and further updates will be made when the outline planning application has been submitted and validated
How can I comment on the Planning Application?
Information will be available on the Online register of planning applications for minerals, waste and our development - Surrey County Council (surreycc.gov.uk). You can visit the website to make comments on an application and/or use it to check on the progress of applications under consideration.
How will people be able to apply to become tenants at the new extra care scheme?
Applications will be welcomed from people who are struggling to keep living at their current home and who really need the affordable housing, care and support offered by Extra Care Housing to remain as independent as possible.
Anyone who applies will have their needs assessed by Surrey County Council. Where that person will clearly benefit from a tenancy in the Extra Care Housing community, their application can be examined for its suitability. Some aspects which will be looked at include:
• How much care and support the person needs to remain independent
• The applicant’s age – individual exceptions can be made where it’s clear that the community would be the best place to help the person to keep living independently
• How urgent the person’s need is to become a tenant
SCC will then decide who can be provided with a tenancy and, if there is a waiting list, who should be prioritised when a flat becomes vacant.
Will there be activities for the residents?
A key focus of Extra Care Housing is providing enjoyable activities for residents. We recognise that to make the development an enjoyable place to live, the management team will work closely with residents and other parties to arrange a variety of activities focused on well-being, engagement, and fun, to maximise residents’ enjoyment of their homes.
Why have you given no consideration to people affected by these plans who are without computers or who are not sufficiently technical?
Our consultation company Your Shout has been running community engagement sessions like this for many years, including for many local authorities, and their experience is that hosting these consultations online makes them more accessible and more inclusive. The reply-paid leaflet that was sent to local properties contained information on how to find out more about the proposals, as well as providing an opportunity for those without internet capability to submit their questions and share their views.
Why is the new Pinehurst shown as 4 storey development and therefore out of keeping with the surroundings?
The site will have to achieve a certain number of apartment units. When deciding on the height of the building, we have considered the surrounding residences and appropriate daylight/sunlight assessments have been undertaken to ensure it does not interfere with the views and natural daylight.
Has anyone considered the extra people who will register with Park Road Surgery, it can take up to 3 weeks currently?
Extra Care Housing is a care-led setting, a key objective is health and wellbeing, to ensure people can live in the right location at the right time so they are less likely to fall ill or injure themselves. Surrey CC hopes to reduce the strain on the NHS and the commissioning team is already having conversations with the local NHS primary care team to plan for the residents’ needs.
What noise abatement measures will be implemented to reduce the noise caused from the new road entry point?
Surrey CC has carefully assessed any noise impact of its our proposals to make sure the development will not generate significant noise impact on the neighbouring residents.
If the car parking area is to be eliminated what mitigation measures will be put in place to prevent light spillover?
Surrey CC wants to make sure that the development will have low impact lighting, and lighting levels in the car park that are sufficient for safety but avoid any impact on the neighbouring properties. This is supported by the ideas for landscaping and planting strategy which will be developed in the detailed design stages.
Will the ends facing Middle Gordon Road have such windows and balconies which would overlook?
The windows that face towards these gardens don’t have balconies. The units that have balconies are ones that look towards the east and west. Surrey CC has undertaken impact studies of daylight and sunlight, and SCC’s designers have calculated that there is minimal impact of overlooking.
What is the estimated build time? What protection to the surrounding properties will be provided?
Surrey CC is at the beginning of a tender process to find a development partner. SCC’s overall development programme will be starting in Spring 2023 with the appointment of the development partner. SCC anticipates that the first of the developments will be opened in late Spring 2026 and the fifth of the current batch of sites opening in 2027. We are anticipating a construction period of between 15 to 22 months. We are hoping to use modern methods of construction so that key components will be manufactured off site and brought to site for assembly. That will reduce the construction period and the amount of disruption to residents. As regards to piling, it is too early to state whether it will be necessary because the detailed design isn’t completed yet.
The contractor will place vibration monitoring equipment at the boundary with various properties. They will be continuously monitored throughout the construction period to ensure vibration levels pose no risk of damage to adjoining properties.
The contractor will also have to provide a method statement detailing measures to prevent / minimise noisy works, detailing hours of operation, delivery times and routes etc.
Thirdly, the contractor will also have to register with the Considerate Constructors Scheme (ccscheme.org.uk) and to comply with its Code of Considerate Practice, demonstrating its three key principles of respecting the community, caring for the environment and valuing the workforce.
Which entrance would be used for construction traffic? The existing Park Road or the new one or both?
We will be constructing a new access at Park Street. It may or may not be feasible to use the new Park Street access during the construction phase. It is too early to say at this stage, until SCC has a development partner on board.
Resale value of surrounding properties will be adversely affected; what compensation will be provided and what will our rateable value be changed?
The impact of value on surrounding properties is not a valid matter for consideration in the planning process.
Is the method of development funding considered as part of the planning application process?
Not specifically, however, the viability of the scheme is considered during the planning process.
Park Street is a very busy road and difficult to cross at times. Is a pedestrian crossing going to be considered and perhaps unblocking the drain under the bridge?
Local residents can report issues of this type on the Surrey County Council website. Although not directly related to this proposal, the team has reported the flooding issue raised during this consultation to the Highways authorities as a matter of concern, and are awaiting their response.
The reason for proposing Park Street for pedestrian access is that is shouldn’t be necessary to cross any main roads except by the railway station where there are a number of crossings leading into the town centre. It will be become apparent during the detailed design process whether pedestrian or wheelchair user access is an issue and recommendations from the Highways authority about measures required to ensure residents are safe crossing local roads will be put into effect.
With a 4-storey building right outside my window, I fear this will block out any natural light?
SCC have undertaken rights of light studies that demonstrate no loss of sunlight/daylight to nearby properties.
Why has the block facing Park Street been positioned so far back from Park Street?
The images on the website are artistic illustrations of how the development might appear. This is also something that can be reviewed, and at detailed design stage the current design can be compared with future designs.
Is there an age restriction on the properties i.e., what age groups are you targeting?
Although there is no specific age restriction, we will be targeting older people and therefore age will be an important element of the nomination process. Most people will be elderly, but some people may be younger dependent on their needs.
When will the application be submitted?
We anticipate that the application will be submitted during the second or third week of January 2023.
What is the percentage of residents that are expected to drive cars rather than mobility scooters?
We cannot yet answer that question. The application will be accompanied by a number of technical reports which include assessment of the suitability of local highways, the proposed number and age of residents, the proximity of the site to community services and other aspects to determine how people will travel.
What noise abatement measures will be taken to reduce the noise of the anticipated large vehicles?
For large vehicles which includes the servicing vehicles and refuse collection vehicles, the access road has been designed with a turning head that is away from the residents in the new development and those in the adjoining properties. Reversing of vehicles will be kept to a minimum and will take place as far away as possible from neighbouring residences.
What consideration has been made for fire evacuation in the event of a fire?
SCC's design team has considered and complied with all fire regulations. For example, the walls and insulation will be non-flammable. Apartments designed specifically for wheelchair users will be on the ground floor. In terms of evacuation of residents on the other floors, the design team has adhered to the shortest distance between fire doors. There are 4 fire stairs and one fire-safe lift on each wing for evacuation. The building will have sprinklers installed throughout as means of fire suppression. There will also be new technology to contact residents and give bespoke advice on what they should do in the event of a fire.
Could you give me any idea of the anticipated costs to buy/rent on completion of the project?
The homes will be offered on an affordable rental basis with the rent set at a level that can be met by housing benefit. Residents will be occupying the new homes under secure tenancies. There may be cases where people are not in receipt of housing benefit and may have limited means, but they will pay the same level of rent to ensure the homes are affordable for everyone. Unfortunately, it is too early to give a figure on how much the rent will be as housing benefit varies by location and is set regionally with periodic adjustments by government.