Castle Court anniversary

Member Article

Tenants celebrate Castle Court’s first anniversary

Elderly tenants in County Durham celebrated the first anniversary of a housing development that has helped them to live independent lives.

The Tenant Community Group at Castle Court in Annfield Plain, Stanley organised a BBQ with entertainment this week (Tuesday, June 10) to celebrate the development’s first anniversary since it was officially unveiled last year.

The £3.6m Derwentside Homes development which was designed for the over 55’s, consists of 41 luxury one and two-bedroom apartments, all featuring fully fitted bathrooms and kitchens, as well as an upgraded communal washing/drying area, modern wet rooms, a hairdresser’s, an IT/cinema suite and a large, fully landscaped central courtyard.

Angela Hodgson, Older Persons Services Manager at Derwentside Homes, said: “It’s fantastic to celebrate the developments first anniversary with our tenants. Castle Court is absolutely outstanding and it’s great to see so many tenants enjoying themselves.

“We have found that tenants living in Castle Court have a spring in their step due to the varied programme of activities organised by the residents group, ranging from cheese and wine parties, a steak pie and Guinness night for St Patrick’s day, to trips to the local theatre.”

The event included music performances from rock band ‘Class’, which was made up of school children from West Pelton Junior School.

Val Perkins, 61, Secretary of the Tenant Community Group at Castle Court, said: “We are trying to vary the events, so that everyone can join in. We have better social lives and have never had so many friends before - it’s like one big holiday.”

The development has proven to be so popular with tenants that all apartments were let within weeks of being made available.

Six of the original tenants returned to Castle Court providing them with the ability to live independently, which would have otherwise meant going into long term care.

Elsie Laws, 85, was an original tenant of Castle Court and returned after the modernisation work.

She said: “It’s great – there’s more space since it’s been done up and there’s always lots of events on for the tenants.

“It’s nice that there’s a mix of people, I have lots of new friends here – it’s one big happy family.”

The renovation work was carried out by national housing and regeneration specialist, Keepmoat with the company ensuring that throughout the project, opportunities for work and training were provided to local people.

Deborah Kennedy a Concierge at Castle Court who looks after the tenants, said: “It’s fantastic, it’s like a five star hotel – they love it.

“Everything is spot on and there are lots of communal areas that hold bingo, cheese and wine parties and exercise classes – they have a great social life here.”

This was posted in Bdaily's Members' News section by Ailsa Macmillan .

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