East Boro Housing Trust has been granted planning permission to develop the site of the Old School/Arts Centre, School Lane in Dorchester which has been sitting empty and disused since the Arts Centre moved to it’s new home in 2015. East Boro has purchased the site from the Duchy of Cornwall, who have made the site available at below market value. East Boro are redeveloping the site to provide three new disability adapted bungalows with two further one bedroom houses and a communal lounge in the existing building.
The much needed new homes will be owned by East Boro Housing Trust, who will manage and maintain the scheme. East Boro provides housing for older people and for people with learning or physical disabilities and already has some 60 schemes across Dorset. East Boro is working in partnership with the NHS, which is providing capital funding to enable innovative technology to be installed to increase the independence of the tenants, it will also ensure that the rents are affordable.
The accommodation at School Lane will be let to people who have a learning or physical disability, providing a settled home with the support they need to live independently. They will also benefit from easy access to the town centre.
East Boro is working in partnership with Dorset County Council who will nominate the tenants. Dorset County Council’s Cabinet member for health and care Cllr Jill Haynes said, “We are pleased to be working with East Boro to deliver much needed new homes for people with learning or physical disabilities. Together we will deliver the homes and support needed to ensure people can live independently in the community rather than in hospital or residential care.”
An open exhibition of the proposed plans was held in April 2017 where members of the local community were invited to view the plans and pose any questions or concerns that they might have. The response to the proposals was very positive and work on the redevelopment will shortly be getting underway with the first tenants due to move in before Christmas 2018.
Elieen Hayward, Chair of East Boro, said, “We are looking forward to providing new sustainable homes for 5 local people at this accessible town centre site. We will be working with the Council and NHS to ensure that the homes, which will incorporate the latest ‘smart home’ technology, enable local people with a learning or physical disability to live independently