McCarthy & Stone, Britain’s leading builder of retirement apartments, has welcomed the publication of the Age UK report Making it Work for Us: a residents’ enquiry into sheltered and retirement housing. The company agrees wholeheartedly with the report’s premise of the need for greater investment in affordable, attractive housing for people in later life and the development of a national vision and leadership in this area.
Gary Day, director of land and planning at McCarthy & Stone, commented: “We support Age UK’s key recommendations around both the need to promote the benefits of retirement housing to future generations and their call on policymakers and planners to facilitate the provision of additional retirement housing to meet the growing demand.
“The report’s proposals around greater transparency in the delivery of retirement housing and associated services, as part of a regulatory framework which protects residents, are backed by McCarthy & Stone, and are areas in which we are already fully playing our part.”
As part of its commitment to changing attitudes in the sector, McCarthy & Stone this year launched the Greater Life Advisory Board – a non-executive advisory board which is helping the company to champion a ‘greater life in later life’ and to consider a range of key age-related issues. In 2011, it also established its own panel of residents who live in McCarthy & Stone properties.
Former Government Health Minister Edwina Currie is a member of the advisory board and she recently joined a fact-finding tour looking at issues around housing provision for people in later life and has met residents, architects and those involved in the planning process.
Having toured McCarthy & Stone’s “Later Life” housing developments at Lantern Court, Ilfracombe, and Isabel Court, Cowick Street, Exeter, she said: “The new developments had the “wow!” factor. We were asking the question, why? How is this achieved? What brings older people into these developments – and what keeps them out? How can where we live improve our life chances – or wreck them? The fact-finding tour has reinforced in my mind how essential it is that builders, planners and the government address urgently the need for appropriate accommodation for this burgeoning section of the community.”