What’s the key to the future of housing with extra care?

A partnership of students, housing and construction professionals has launched a report which identifies the future of extra care housing for older people in Lincolnshire.

Architecture and design, business and health and social care students from the University of Lincoln have been working with LACE Housing and professional partners to design the next generation of housing with care in the county.

The findings, included in a 23-page report entitled ‘Ideas for Change 2017: Extra Care Housing in Lincolnshire’, were presented to 60 guests including Baroness Warwick, Chair of the National Housing Federation on 10 April.

The event began with a welcome by Nick Chambers, Chief Executive of LACE Housing, followed by presentations by Dr Primali Paranagamage from the university’s School of Architecture and Design and Joseph Istance, a third-year architecture student.

Joseph highlighted the five key principles that the students had identified as key markers for housing for older people, including infrastructure and network, deinstitutionalisation, community integration, opportunities not problems and independence.

On behalf of his fellow students Joseph said:

“We hope that our work here will be a catalyst for further dialogue to overcome the necessary changes needed to develop extra care in housing.”

Baroness Warwick said:

“I have been struck by the collaborative partnership working of this project and I believe that the innovative solutions listed in this report could be used in other parts of the country, to remedy our current housing problem.”

After lunch, Baroness Warwick visited Olsen Court, an example of a retirement housing village that includes specialist extra care provision by LACE Housing. She was given a tour of the facilities and met some of the residents.

She added:

“I thoroughly enjoyed my visit to Lincoln and gained such a profound insight into the work of LACE Housing and its ethos.

“I was particularly pleased to see the partnership work in action, not only in the innovative collaboration with the university but also with the Lincs Independent Living Partnership.

“I would love to hear about how the recommendations outlined in the Ideas for Change Report progress, and I shall certainly use LACE Housing as an exemplar of what an efficient housing association with a clear purpose and sense of mission can achieve.”

Nick said:

“We were delighted to welcome Baroness Warwick and to share with her our innovative approach to partnership working and the design and delivery of specialist housing and support services for older people in Lincolnshire.

“It has been an honour to introduce the Baroness to the students from the University of Lincoln who have worked so hard on the report. It will no doubt have a large impact on what housing with care looks like in the future.”

The professional partners who supported the students during the project were Saunders Boston, Thornton-Firkin, Lindum Group and South Holland District Council.