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Extra care housing is about living at home, not in a home

On 10 February, Orbit Independent Living held an Older Person’s Information Day at St Mary’s Church in Leamington Spa. The event was organised for anyone wishing to learn more about extra care living and the services available to older people in the area.

More than 50 local people attended on the day to not only talk to staff from Orbit, but also to speak with representatives from Age UK, Warwickshire District Council’s Extra Care Task Force, Warwick District Council, Home Instead, Wright Hassall, Alzheimer’s Society and PRX.

With Orbit’s 178-apartment Queensway Court extra care scheme due for completion this Spring, the event helped to dispel some of the myths around extra care and to provide information on other local services for those interested. Attendees were also able to talk to some of the people who will be providing services at Queensway as well as other organisations that offer support to people as they get older.

Extra care is a relatively new concept; not to be confused with a typical care home, extra care schemes promote well-being and independence in later life. Schemes are cleverly designed to allow people to maintain their independence, but at the same time, ensure that care and support is available as and when required.

“Extra care housing is about living at home, not in a home,” says Tim Willis of Warwickshire County Council’s Extra Care Task Force. “The event publicly acknowledged the collaborative working relationship between Warwickshire County Council, Orbit Independent Living, their care service partners, Home Instead, Warwick District Council, the Homes and Communities Agency, and local and valued agencies such as Age UK and Wright Hassall. It allowed local people the opportunity to see and hear what the very welcome addition of Queensway Court to the local older people’s housing landscape can offer."

The scheme, which is being developed by Orbit Homes and will be managed by Orbit Independent Living, is located on Queensway in Leamington Spa and comprises 178 one and two bedroom apartments, designed specifically for the over 55’s. The apartments will be available through a mix of shared ownership and affordable rent. The design incorporates a number of communal facilities, including a restaurant, hairdressing salon and activity room, as well as a number of landscaped communal gardens and 24-hour care will be available on site, if required.

For more information about Queensway Court, visit