Owner’s pledge on Norfolk care home that has been empty for more than five years

PUBLISHED: 11:02 28 July 2014 | UPDATED: 11:02 28 July 2014

Empty care home on Paul Engelhard Way, Cawston. Picture: ANTONY KELLY

Empty care home on Paul Engelhard Way, Cawston. Picture: ANTONY KELLY

Archant Norfolk 2014

The owner of a Norfolk care home has pledged that it will open its doors to residents by the end of the year - more than five years after it was first built.

The facility in Cawston, near Aylsham, was constructed on a new housing estate in the village in 2009, but has stood empty ever since, much to the frustration of local residents.

However, the owner of Cawston Care Home, in Paul Engelhard Way, said he would be starting a recruitment campaign this autumn and planned to open the building to its first residents by the end of the year.

The building on the Old Winery site in Cawston has been empty for more than five years after the company that built it went into administration. However, the care home was bought by Florence Care last year and has been registered with the Care Quality Commission since last June.

Shans Bhasin, managing director for Cawston Care Home, said the 42 bed nursing and elderly care home was currently having some renovations done to also care for with people with dementia.

He added that the home already had a manager in place and there had already been some expressions of interest from potential future residents, despite not advertising the facility.

He said: “Plans are to open the care home in stages to aid a steady introduction to the area. Florence Care are as eager to clear the site, landscape and occupy Cawston Care Home as the local parish and residents are to avoid any potential unauthorised use of the land they live next to.”

“Florence Care are very excited to be able to bring a quality and care package to Cawston Care Home and look forward to developing a strong relationship with the local area, its residents and the authorities.”

Local resident Kathleen Schuil said it was a shame that the home had been empty for so long.

“People are always asking what is happening to it and when we first moved in there was a man in his 90s who used to come over every Sunday because that is where he and his wife wanted to go. It is a beautiful place and it is an absolute waste. There must have been a few dozen people that could have been employed there,” she said.

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