Former care home faces conversion into flats

PUBLISHED: 15:57 15 August 2017 | UPDATED: 15:57 15 August 2017

Cleeve Court Nursing Home.

Cleeve Court Nursing Home.

Archant

A care home in Cleeve could be turned into several apartments, with the building's owners saying it is impossible for smaller facilities to survive.

Planning permission is being sought from North Somerset Council to convert the former Cleeve Court Nursing Home into nine flats.

Last year Optima sought planning permission for several care apartments and North Somerset Council accepted the request in March.

However, Optima says that idea is no longer feasible on cost grounds.

In its design statement, it said: “Very relevant to this (nine apartments) application is a recently approved proposal for conversion to extra care apartments.

“That application proposed eight extra care apartments and communal facilities to provide a care home setting for elderly people.

“However, the costs associated with converting a listed building of this type and particular building methods required mean that the proposal was becoming marginal in terms of viability – an alternative had to be found.”

Optima believes the only sensible alternative is to convert that space into nine apartments of one or two bedrooms.

Its report said: “In the present market, it is no longer viable for such small care homes to survive.

“The cost of setting up the employment team, combined with the more expensive nature of the listed building alterations, means we have had to look at alternatives and standard residential was the only real alternative.”

Cleeve Court provided accommodation for 29 people in 22 bedrooms before closing in September 2016.

However, by reconfiguring internal walls it says a nine-flat scheme is possible, with room for a small gym.

Optima says the development would not lead to any more cars using the narrow lane off the A370 than when the home was open and would help to provide jobs for the local area.

Its report said: “The proposal will provide economic benefits to the area by providing employment in the construction industry and will provide homes for people in a sustainable location.”

Cleeve Court was built in the 1820s and was a private home before being turned into a care home.

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