A consultation has been launched into controversial plans to transform a school site into a care facility.
A notice sent out by Shevington Parish Council has asked residents for their opinions on the proposed development of the former Shevington Community Primary School, which closed in July despite significant opposition from residents.
As part of the notice, the council outlined its vision for the premises in Miles Lane to create new provisions for the area’s elderly people, following discussions between councillors and representatives from age-related health groups.
The leaflet reads: “We believe this is a huge opportunity to create an imaginative all-age group facility for the community, with a bias towards care for the elderly, which will include sheltered housing or a care home.
“You will all be aware that there are many new style, inclusive complexes of this type being provided all over the country.
“We hope to collect ideas and to help create a centre of excellence for all.”
The survey also cites “declining pupil numbers” and an “ageing population” behind the school closure, a decision which was met with anger and dismay from residents and councillors alike when it was announced.
But councillors have since been working to develop services for the vulnerable on the disused land.
The three ward councillors for Shevington with Lower Ground Ward, Coun Mike Crosby, Paul Collins and Damian Edwardson have requested meetings with officers and portfolio holder Coun Keith Cunliffe to discuss the future of the site.
Following the unsuccessful battle to keep the school open, Coun Crosby said: “My ward colleagues and I feel now is the time to look at the future of the site and we will be putting our demand to officers and the council to evaluate the possibility of utilising the site for services for vulnerable adults with provision to incorporate other complementary services that will ensure we both exploit local amenities and meet local needs.”
He added: “The councillors believe that there should be a combination of accommodation to meet the special needs of vulnerable adults, which should include sheltered housing and state-of-the-art facilities for specialist care for residents with cognitive, sensory and mobility needs, whilst at the same time incorporating supporting activities across the site to enrich the quality of life the residents.
“Heritage should also be a factor in any proposals and the history of the school and the site should be incorporated in the design and the facilities.”
Opened more than 200 years ago as Broad o’th’ Lane School, Shevington Community Primary closed its doors for good at the end of the last school term after lengthy consultations over spiralling costs and a drop in demand for school places.
The school’s remaining pupils were transferred to the nearby Shevington Vale for the start for the start of the new school year.
Residents are able to voice their opinion by contacting firstname.lastname@example.org, or by handing in a completed survey at Shevington Library.