A Salford resident has won a competition to name City West Housing Trust’s new £6.5 million state-of-the-art extra care facility, which is set to transform the former Ninian Gardens site in Walkden town centre.
The 56-apartment extra care facility will provide much needed modern support services for elderly and vulnerable residents, and will play a vital role in enabling people to live independent lives for as long as possible whilst reducing hospital admissions.
The development will replace the former Ninian Gardens facility in Worsley which closed in November 2014, and will be the second extra care facility to be built by City West following the opening of its flagship 66-bed Amblecote Gardens scheme in Little Hulton in September last year.
Matt Jones, Director of Customer Operations at City West, said: “This proposed new facility will play a major role in supporting an ageing population in Salford.
“Care services for the most vulnerable in our communities are being stretched, with people stuck in hospital beds for weeks on end. Developments like this with a focus on maintaining independence with support that is tailored to the individual are vital in providing high quality accommodation based on “Homes for Life” principles.
“Our development at Amblecote Gardens was the first extra care facility built in Salford in five years, and we are delighted that we have been able to announce proposal for our second just five months after it was opened.”
The new purpose-built extra care facility has been designed using the principles of intentional communities – integrating the facility with the wider community so it can be used by the community and draw on the community for additional support. It will have its own café and wellbeing centre, in addition to landscaped gardens, on-site parking facilities and round-the-clock tailored support.
Alison Gresty, a 43-year-old City West resident from Little Hulton, scooped the prize of £50 in Tesco vouchers after her entry to name the facility ‘Bourke Gardens’ was chosen by the landlord.
Alison suggested the name in honour of the Lady Bourke Clock which stood near the site off Bridgewater Road.
The clock was originally used to alert coal miners to the beginning and end of their shifts and is famous for being thought to have inspired the opening lines of George Orwell’s ‘Nineteen Eighty-Four’ – which references a clock striking 13 bells at 1pm. This unique number of chimes was introduced to make sure workers could hear when their lunch break was over.
Alison said: “My father spent 30 years working at the mining site by the Lady Bourke Clock, so I thought naming the facility would be a great way to honour my family, as well as marking an important part of local history.
“I am really thrilled that City West picked my entry – I never expected to win. It’s fantastic that Bourke Gardens will be keeping the area’s heritage alive, and the story behind its name can be shared with future generations.”
David Cummins, Managing Director of City West Housing Trust, said: “City West is committed to involving our customers in decisions – Alison’s entry made reference to an important piece of local history, and that’s why it stood out as a clear winner.
“Building on the design principles of Amblecote Gardens, Bourke Gardens will play a vital role in supporting Salford’s older population, whilst reducing hospital admissions where possible.
“With large cuts facing adult services in Salford, and the number of people aged over 65 expected to rise by 16% over the next ten years, we recognise the need for high quality accommodation like Bourke Gardens – ensuring older people have round-the-clock access to the tailored care and support they need.”