Headlines: February 27th, 2004

Sixteen successful bidders will share 29 million pounds in the first round of funding to provide Extra Care Housing, which allows older people and other vulnerable adults to maintain their independence while being supported round the clock. The announcement of extra funding means 1,420 places will be provided.The scheme provides 24-hour support from social care and health teams to people living in their own private flats or bungalows. They can have access to meals, domestic support, leisure and recreation facilities and, where necessary, nursing care and security. In some cases the schemes allow people to buy their living space.

Eleven of the successful bids will provide 925 units in the council areas of Brighton and Hove, East Riding, Enfield, Havering, Liverpool, Milton Keynes, Northamptonshire, Peterborough, Staffordshire, Stoke-On-Trent and West Sussex. These will be mainly new build projects with some remodelled schemes or a mixture of both. The five other bidders will improve communal facilities in order to qualify as extra care housing and will provide 495 units in Haringey, Salford, Swindon, Warrington, and Worcestershire.

A further six schemes, two in Warrington and one each in Gateshead, Gloucestershire, Herefordshire and Leeds have also been earmarked at this stage for a total of 17 million pounds from the 58 million set aside for 2005-6. They will see the creation of a further 306 extra care places.