City firm to lead £100m project

FUTURE: An artist's impression of one of the schemes
FUTURE: An artist's impression of one of the schemes
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A consortium, led by the Preston-based Eric Wright Group, has been appointed to build 390 extra care apartments in the biggest scheme of its kind to ever be developed in Stoke-on-Trent.

The city council has nominated Sapphire – a consortium of construction, housing, facilities management, property development and architect professionals – to complete the £100m project over the next three years.

The villages will be created at three sites across the city for people aged over 55 and will be fully-occupied by 2017.

The villages will offer spacious apartments within a community setting, with facilities on site and convenient transport links.

The consortium comprises a number of firms which have experience in providing a range of housing projects countrywide – the Eric Wright Group, Your Housing Group, Kajima Partnerships Limited, and Seddon Construction.

Richard Turpin, from the Eric Wright Group, said: “We are delighted to have secured this prestigious contract.

“We are looking forward to making our plans for the villages a reality for the people of Stoke.”

Facilities include one-bed and two-bed self-contained apartments, communal lounges, restaurant facilities, a launderette, landscaped gardens, hair and beauty salons, gyms and a variety of social and activity events.

The housing will help meet an identified need in the city and will be available for a range of people. It offers residents the opportunity to continue living independently with the same privacy they would have in any other kind of housing, but with access to other services and facilities that help them.

Sapphire will build, finance and operate the retirement villages over a 25-year period in partnership with the council.