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170 home retirement village for Anchor Trust in the heart of Hamphire
The historic Mount Hospital in the heart of Hampshire closed 10 years ago, with the glorious Victorian building falling into disrepair until bought by Anchor Trust with plans for its rebirth at the heart of a 170-home retirement village. We've now delivered a sensitive restoration of the Mount as the centrepiece for Bishopstoke Park, housing a luxurious swimming pool, spa and state-of-the-art
Bishopstoke Park is just one example of the 1,000 homes for over-55s our construction team will deliver in 2015 in this burgeoning sector. Indeed a quarter of our residential construction activity is in care and retirement, where the scope ranges from large retirement villages such as Bishopstoke, to dementia and nursing care homes for local authorities. Whatever the project, it requires the specialist knowledge our teams bring to these highly specialised homes.
Bishopstoke Park is our second village for Anchor after our team set the template for retirement villages when it delivered Denham Garden Village for Anchor in Buckinghamshire over five years ago.
Prices for homes on the 15-hectare Bishopstoke Park site start at £250,000 and rise to more than £870,000 for a two-bed penthouse. The quality and finish of the homes is very upmarket, reflecting the discerning nature of this market. It’s a self-contained community, with facilities also including;
However, taking pride of place at Bishopstoke Park is the restored 19th century Mount. It's the beating hear of a virbrant community of 170 independent and assisted living apartments set in beautiful woodland that give older people the opportunity to live independently and receive care by highly trained professionals should they need it.
The extensive grounds at Bishopstoke Park include a mix of gardens, open spaces, barbeque and picnic areas as well as a woodland area complete with Trim Trail for keen joggers and walkers.
Charlie Scherer, chief operating officer, explains:
‘Bishopstoke Park is about giving older people a lifestyle that fits their aspirations for energetic, full-on lifestyles, allowing them to live independently while having access to care by highly trained professionals should they need it. It’s the sign of things to come and, likewise, requires specialised experience from a building perspective to get it right.’
Bishopstoke Park reflects how retirement homes are really coming of age, with the model changing beyond all recognition in recent years. It’s about providing the UK’s growing older economy with a 5-star hotel experience and accommodation and services that will grow with an ageing population.
of successful delivery in the care market is meticulous planning, attention to
detail and a good helping of empathy,’ says Debbie Sizer, national care sector
manager at Willmott Dixon. ‘You need to understand its unique requirements. The
quality has to be very, very high for people in care, due to the dependence
they have on their environments.’
‘Experience brings understanding of the complexity and high-quality of programming needed,’ explains Debbie, ‘The final phase is very intense. All the apartments and adjacent communal areas such as shops and leisure facilities have to be ready by the end date.’ Experience of complex M&E systems is also crucial, she adds, as problems are often encountered with new builds in this area.
In addition to having the right technical skills in place, teams have to make the right emotional connection with their clients. ‘Care clients are very sensitive to the needs of their customers,’ says Debbie. ‘They are very concerned about the quality they are providing for their residents and our teams need an empathy and compassion to know who they are building for,’ she adds. ‘You have to approach these projects as if your grandmother was moving in.’