Work on a new supported housing development in Skelmersdale has begun in partnership with West Lancashire Borough Council, The Birchwood Centre, and Calico Homes.
Funding of £700,000 will be provided by Homes England towards to the £2.7m total to provide 24 short-stay apartments for young people and adults with complex needs who are experiencing or are at risk of homelessness.
Residents will benefit from professional support with their life skills, health, and wellbeing, alongside support to develop their skills and employability to assist them when moving on to permanent accommodation.
The building will also include provision for training and outreach work and will support other workstreams managed by The Birchwood Centre and their partners.
The project, which will be named ‘The Birchwood West Lancs Foyer’, is being built on land located in Birch Green which was previously used as a carpark.
The land was made available by West Lancashire Borough Council several years earlier for this use, but this did not come to fruition due to various setbacks. However, through the new partnership, this vision is finally being realised.
The building will be let via Calico Homes and managed by their dedicated Supported Housing Team. The land will be leased on a long-term basis from West Lancashire Borough Council, with the support service facilitated by The Birchwood Centre.
The development is due to complete in January 2023.
Wendy Malone, Director of Development at Calico Homes said: “This project is something that we’re proud to be part of. One of our main priorities is supporting organisations across the region, using the strength and agility of the group to plug the gaps in local service delivery.
“The Birchwood West Lancs Foyer aligns with our wider commitment to support communities where they need it the most. I’m looking forward to seeing the lasting, positive impact this will have on people’s lives, now and in the future.”
Councillor Jenny Wilkie, portfolio holder for Housing and Landlord Services, said: ” The delivery of this project demonstrates the Councils ongoing commitment to meeting need in our Borough. We are absolutely delighted to have been able to bring this project to reality by identifying and then successfully working with our amazing and committed delivery partners to develop this much needed facility. It will benefit vulnerable young people and adults who would otherwise have nowhere to live and provide services to assist them to learn valuable independent living, work and resilience skills which will be intended to help them as they move on.”