Topping out ceremony at £10m care development in Hailsham

A topping-out ceremony was held at the site of Bentley Grange, the new extra care development in Hailsham SUS-150202-124242001
A topping-out ceremony was held at the site of Bentley Grange, the new extra care development in Hailsham SUS-150202-124242001

A ceremony has been held to mark a milestone in a £10m pound project to construct a new extra care scheme housing development in Hailsham.

The development, Bentley Grange in Battle Road, will provide 45 flats, a restaurant. lounge and activity room, hairdressing and pamper suite and landscaped gardens.

The project will allow older people with care and support needs to live independently.

It is a partnership between East Sussex County Council, Wealden District Council and Saxon Weald, the housing association which will own and manage the scheme. Representatives of partner organisations and construction firm Bouygues UK attended a traditional ‘topping-out’ ceremony, which marks the new building reaching its topmost point.

The scheme will offer 24-hour on-site care and also includes a neighbouring development offering ten flats for people with learning disabilities. The scheme is the sixth in a series of extra care schemes delivered by the county council and partners.

Cllr Bill Bentley, county council lead member for adult social care, said: “It was great to see the fantastic work of the architect and builders in producing a very high quality building which will be a real asset to Hailsham. Extra care schemes such as this one, and the others we’ve delivered across the county, allow older people to live independent lives but with the peace of mind of knowing help and support is close at hand. It will also mean couples can stay together, even if one of them needs care, and will offer a safe, welcoming, environment which is also at the heart of the wider community.”

The scheme, funded by a mixture of private finance raised by Saxon Weald and £1 million in grant funding from the county council, is expected to create 30 new jobs.

Thirty five flats are available for affordable rent and will be offered to people with care needs who are eligible for housing through the district council. Ten flats will be for sale on a shared ownership basis. The development is due to be completed in late August or early September.