Fresh plans for retirement village in Albourne to be revealed

Moat Park in Great Easton in Essex is a good example of the high standards of today's retirement villages. Photo by Matthew Power Photography
Moat Park in Great Easton in Essex is a good example of the high standards of today's retirement villages. Photo by Matthew Power Photography

Fresh plans for a retirement village in Albourne are to be revealed at a public exhibition.

Residents and business owners in the village are invited to attend the exhibition on Saturday (November 24), at Albourne Village Hall, in The Street, from 12pm to 4pm.

If residents cannot attend, another exhibition is being held at the hall on Tuesday (November 27), from 3pm to 8pm.

The new plans come after a planning application for the site was rejected last year.

Retirement Village Group, which proposes to build the retirement homes on the former Hazeldene Nursery site in London Road (B2118), said it ‘had learned a lot from its mistakes’ and that the ‘hindsight was wonderful’.

The developer is preparing to submit its new planning application and is now keen to hear what residents think.

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Guy Flintoft, planning director for Retirement Village Group, said: “It is no secret that our 2017 planning application was rejected. I know we learned a lot from that experience.

“I believe that encouraging a positive dialogue with the existing community is an important step in ensuring our retirement village is able to fully meet the needs of the area and bring real benefits to Albourne.

“We are seeking as much feedback as possible from residents, neighbours and other interested group, to get a better understanding of how our proposals can help meet the growing need for residential property with extra carebest serve the community.

“We want to work closely with local residents and other stakeholders to ensure that the retirement village fits in with the existing community.”

Mr Flintoft said it is hoped the new retirement village will provide a ‘desirable place to live that also offers all the benefits of extra care’.

“We plan to design a beautiful retirement village that is not only lovely to live in but also lovely to live near,” he said.

“Everyone knows that our society is aging. The question is how should we respond?

“We believe that a well-designed retirement village offers people real choices in terms of providing a supportive community, extra care and the sort of independent lifestyle today’s retirees expect.

“As a society, our healthcare needs have changed, and we should respect that.”

A public consultation allows residents to have their say on development proposals.

Mr Flintoft said the team was looking forward to engaging with the parish and district council about the plans.

He said: “Of course, there is still much to do before we can hope to secure planning consent, but we look forward to engaging with both Albourne Parish Council and the planning authority, Mid Sussex District Council, so that our proposals really help the district meet the growing need for this type of development.”

Full details on the project and an online questionnaire can be found at www.albourneretirementvillage.info.

The feedback forms will be available on the website from Saturday (November 24), until December 10.