York & North Yorkshire

£20m elderly care scheme proposed for Thirsk

Lambert Memorial Community Hospital, Thirsk. Picture South Tees Hospitals NHS Trust
Under the proposals Thirsk's community hospital could be demolished

More than £20m could be spent on new care facilities for the elderly at Thirsk in North Yorkshire.

The scheme would involve the replacement of an elderly people's home with a new and larger extra care housing development.

A new health centre, replacing the town's community hospital, and a community library could also be built

North Yorkshire County Council said the scheme was a "once in generation opportunity".

The Conservative-run council said it believed extra care housing offered older people the care and support they may need while enabling them to maintain a level of independence.

Its own figures suggest one in four of North Yorkshire's population will be aged over 65 and there will be an increase of 65% in the number of people aged over 85 by the end of the decade.

The scheme would involve the replacement of Cherry Garth, the county council's elderly people's home, with a new and larger extra care housing development in Chapel Street.

The 16-bed Lambert Memorial Community Hospital would be replaced with a new health centre.

A second extra care housing facility is being proposed as part of a major housing development at nearby Sowerby.

Gareth Dadd, county councillor for Thirsk, said: "This is a once in a generation opportunity. If the two extra care schemes come to fruition there will be state-of-the-art accommodation in Thirsk and Sowerby for upwards of 175 elderly people."

The county council is working on the scheme in partnership with national housing association, Housing 21, and Keepmoat, a regeneration specialist.

The authority said funding for the scheme would come from its partners, existing budgets for social care and government grants.

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