Preston to get specialist residential care home for people with brain injuries

A specialist care home for people with brain injuries is set to be built in suburban Preston.

The 60-bedroomed residential facility - just off Lightfoot Lane in Fulwood - will include a sensory garden as part of a rooftop terrace. It will also feature other “sensory hubs”, as well as a library area, hairdressers, cinema rooms and spaces for IT, games and hobbies.

Preston City Council’s planning committee unanimously granted permission for the development on land bounded by Preston Grasshoppers Rugby Football Club, Fulwood Amateurs Football Club and Hulton House Residential Care Home. The plot is currently a combination of cleared ground and a makeshift overflow car park.

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Hulton House Residential Care Home, off Lightfoot Lane, will be joined by a new care facility on neighbouring land (image: Google)

Councillors were told that the existing neighbouring care facility, which specialises in looking after people with dementia, is run by the same operator behind the proposal that they would go on to approve.

However, committee member Cllr Sue Whittam questioned why, given that link, Hulton House itself had not simply been extended. She also described the application as “very speculative” and sought assurance that if the firm ultimately opted for a different use to the one proposed, that the change would have to be brought back before the committee for fresh consideration.

The applicant, Fulwood Limited, was not represented at the meeting, but city council planning case officer Phil Cousins said that the company had wanted to “keep the two specialist uses operating as separate units” - and he confirmed that any shift away from the plan to provide care for people with brain injuries would require new permission.

However, Mr. Cousins also told the meeting that the authority had not consulted with the NHS over the need for such a facility, because it would be privately-run and “very much a commercial decision” on the part of the applicant. The new home is expected to employ 30 people full time.

Part of the plot on which the new facility will be built (image via Preston City Council)

Access for vehicles will be from Lightfoot Green Lane, sharing the existing road that serves the neighbouring premises. Lancashire County Council raised no objection to that plan, but requested the creation of a pedestrian link to Lightfoot Green Lane, which has been made a condition of the approval and which members were told will be lit.

In a report to the committee, planning officers stated that the part-two and part-three storey building would “sit comfortably within the site” as it would have a similar appearance to Hulton House.

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