Green light for major Hartlepool development promising a new vision for care

Land to the rear of Seaton Lane, which has been earmarked for housing development.

Land to the rear of Seaton Lane, which has been earmarked for housing development.

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A major 580-home development in Hartlepool for older people, young families and services veterans has been given the go-ahead for a second time.

The ‘village’ development, featuring a new nursing home, is due to be created on 30 acres of land off Brenda Road and Seaton Lane after councillors gave it their blessing.

The ambitious scheme aims to create a mixed community with a great focus on providing increasing levels of care to people aged 55 and over.

It will also feature a mix of family homes for ex-armed services veterans and for younger families, including care workers.

The proposal by Jersey-based developer Brenda Road Holdings was previously refused by Hartlepool Borough Council but overturned on appeal last year.

But the developer said they were only given a year to put forward detailed plans and need more time, so applied for outline planning permission again which has been granted by the council’s Planning Committee.

Will Birch, for the developers, told councillors: “This village is built around care. We think there’s huge demand for this in the UK at the moment.

“As our population gets older we are not looking after our older people enough.

“This allows people to keep their independence and their dignity. It is their own homes but care is brought to them.”

The developers said service veterans would be given priority for a portion of the homes and are in talks with numerous forces organisations including the Royal British Legion.

Mr Birch added: “We want to have a mix with younger people so residents feel like it is a real community but if they need help it is there for them.”

The breakdown of the permission includes a 70 bed care home, 300 one and two-bed apartments for people aged over 55; 60 two-bedroom residential; 80 townhouses, a community centre; and retail, workshops and office.

Councillors approved permission by 10 votes to one.

Voting against it Coun Ray Martin-Wells said he did not think it was the right location due to surrounding industrial use, and was not convinced there is any definite arrangements with veterans organisations.

“I foresee major problems down the line,” he said.

Coun Stephen Akers-Belcher, chair of the planning committee, said I don’t think it’s the right site but the proposals put forward are very exciting and if I was in a position where I reached old age I would like to live.

“I really do hope you keep to your word on the scheme for veterans.”

Afterwards, Mr Birch said: “We are very pleased at the committee’s decision. We are working on detailed plans which takes a bit more time for something of this complexity, scope and vision to be realised.”