Automotive industry charity BEN has revealed plans for a new development at its Lynwood Care Centre. The project will see a “world class care facility” built at Sunninghill, near Ascot designed to ensure those connected to the industry, or their immediate dependents, have access to care of the highest quality.
The charity has planning consent to replace its current care centre, after more than 60 years’ use, with a retirement community – Lynwood Village – incorporating a new 93-bed care centre plus leasehold apartments and cottages.
BEN has secured a loan to fund the construction work and awarded a design-and-build contract to Willmott Dixon. Work on site has started with the first phase, which prioritises the new care centre, due to be completed by October 2014.
David Main, BEN’s chief executive, said: “This project is part of an overall strategy to totally transform BEN and its services for the industry over the next decade. Changes in society will always impact on our automotive community and at BEN we constantly review our services and resources to ensure we are best placed to deliver the support needed. In planning the development we have maximised the value of the asset we have in our 20-acre site.
“Sales of the apartments and cottages will allow us to repay the funding for the construction of the new Care Centre and to help fund future service developments in a way that would not have been possible without such an innovative approach. In delivering our current and extensive welfare services we are, and will remain, hugely dependent on the support we receive from all sections within the automotive industry.”
The UK population over the age of 65 is projected to increase by 51% over the next 20 years as people are living longer. Yet, there remains a substantial shortage of good quality care provision, says BEN.
BEN’s direct provision of care services has never been more necessary, with the number of people with dementia predicted to increase by 35% by 2025 and the highly variable quality of care available in general.
In response, maintaining, and increasing, BEN’s capacity to provide care to those from the industry was vital and in addition to nursing care, the new Lynwood Centre will focus on dementia care.
There will also be provision for younger, physically disabled residents and those requiring respite care and/or rehabilitation.
BEN is the automotive industry’s dedicated charity. It provides practical and financial help, support, advice and friendship to those who work, or have worked in the automotive and related industries and to their family dependants.
BEN acquired the Lynwood site in 1948 to provide residential care to those with an industry connection. In the early 1960s it was extended to provide additional nursing care.