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Supported living applicants reassure North Walsham residents homes will be up to standard

PUBLISHED: 13:25 27 November 2017 | UPDATED: 13:25 27 November 2017

North Walsham sign. Photo: Archant Library

North Walsham sign. Photo: Archant Library

Archant Library

A care provider which is currently under action from the Care Quality Commission has put in a planning application to bring a supported living facility to North Walsham.

HB Villages Developments Limited have put in a plan to the North Norfolk District Council to build new supported living accommodation for individuals with learning disabilities in land at Queensway, North Walsham.

The care itself will be provided by Lifeways Community Care, which the CQC says “requires improvement” in six of their current units.

Further action is being taken by the CQC in Lifeways’ New Barnet Community Care facility, which requires improvement in safety, effectiveness, care quality, responsiveness, and leadership.

However the group has been rated as ‘Good’ in 30 of their other 49 other care homes or units across the country.

Adam Penwarden, project director at Lifeways said: “We are the largest care provider in the country, and it’s almost inevitable that some will be weaker as it’s a lot of plates to keep spinning. But overall we are well above the national average for care quality.”

Mr Penwarden added: “With regard to the issues in Barnet, we have revised our systems to ensure that this problem will not reoccur. I would emphasise that the issues were about how we communicated with CQC, rather than about the quality of services.”

The proposal is to build a two storey building, to accommodate 16 people in flats or maisonettes, as well as creating a car park of 10 spaces.

Five full-time staff will also be employed at the new accommodation centre.

Mr Penwarden added: “We’re very keen to meet with our possible new neighbours, and we’d welcome them to call us any time.

“We’ve actually found in the past that people that have come to us with concerns have actually ended up getting involved in our supported living flats, as we’re keen to get our residents as integrated in the local community as possible.”

Agent of the project Michael Gilbert added: “Residents have raised concerns with me about who will be living in this housing. We will be caring purely for people with learning disabilities, who need no more protection than you or I.”

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