Last week (Thursday March 1), Alexandra Place in Woodley was awarded the prize for the Most Innovative Supported/Sheltered Housing Scheme at the Housing Innovation Awards in London.
A Wokingham Borough Council initiative, the extra care housing scheme at Alexandra Place has been developed by Catalyst Housing, constructed on their behalf by The Leadbitter Group, and is managed by Central & Cecil, with the on-site care and support service provided by Housing 21. The scheme is designed to meet the needs of older people and offers varying levels of care and support on-site, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
Alexandra Place provides 46 one-bedroom apartments and 18 two-bedroom apartments, including ten apartments for people with dementia. The comfortable homes and facilities enable older people to live independently for as long as possible where they can surround themselves with their own belongings.
Central & Cecil scheme manager Claudette Campbell received the award at a ceremony held at the Gloucester Hotel on Thursday, she was joined by Alexandra Place residents Carol Lucas and Betty Macbeth.
Carol Lucas said: "All the residents are thrilled that Alexandra Place has won this award. The scheme has only been open a short time and it’s great that it’s been recognised for all the hard work that has gone into it. The apartments here are beautiful. If I want company I can come downstairs and mingle. If I want peace and quiet I can relax in my apartment. There is always something to do."
Betty Macbeth said: "Alexandra Place has provided some wonderful opportunities. I run my own bingo night, Betty’s Bingo and I use the internet suite to surf the web and check my emails. I’m 86 and it’s never too late to learn new things. You could call me a silver surfer!"
Residents can use a wide range of facilities at the scheme, including an exercise room, accessible spa bath, landscaped garden, shop, hairdressers and IT suite. A range of activities are also available as part of the Alexandra Club including resident-led Wii-fit classes, snooker clubs, events such as pyjama parties, resident-led Betty’s Bingo, aromatherapy and arts and crafts.
Cllr Julian McGhee-Sumner, executive member for health and wellbeing at Wokingham Borough Council, said: "We are delighted that Alexandra Place has been recognised as a flagship scheme, the project was a true partnership across several organisations and has successfully delivered a really first class scheme for residents of the Wokingham borough."
Julia Ashley, Central & Cecil’s executive director commercial services, said: "It was a great pleasure to work so constructively with our partners to develop Alexandra Place and a delight to have received this award, recognising it for its quality services for residents and the local community."
Rod Cahill, chief executive of catalyst, added: "I'm so proud that Alexandra Place has been honoured. It is a great example of what Catalyst is all about, building better homes and creating better communities."
Alexandra Place is also in the final three of the Pinders Healthcare Design Awards, having been recognised in the Best Independent Living Design category. Winners will be announced at a ceremony at Lords on Thursday March 22.