Nottingham City Council and Nottingham City Homes are set to celebrate the opening of a brand new extra care centre in Sherwood – which is the latest addition to the city’s ‘Building a Better Nottingham’ council housing programme.

Situated in the beautiful grounds of Woodthorpe Grange Park close to the popular shopping areas of Sherwood and Mapperley, Winwood Court is a brand new extra care centre, and will be officially opened in a ribbon cutting ceremony by one of the first residents to move into the new centre along with the Portfolio Holder for Planning and Housing at Nottingham City Council, Cllr Linda Woodings.

Image: An aerial view of the Winwood Heights site, which includes Winchester and Woodthorpe Courts and the creation of Winwood Court, a new extra care facility in-between the two tower blocks.

The new 44 one-bed fully accessible flats have been built in between the existing tower blocks of Woodthorpe and Winchester Court. They will provide support and 24-hour care on site for those who need it, allowing older and more vulnerable tenants to remain living independently for longer. It will help the council to provide a cost effective alternative to residential care and help support the increasing demand for social care services. 

New and enhanced communal facilities have been created, and solar panels have been installed to help lower running costs. All residents of Winwood Heights will have access to the new facilities helping to bring the small community together and combat social isolation, which can often be experienced by older and more vulnerable residents living independently in their own homes.

Image: Woodthorpe and Winchester Court circa 1980s

Improving health and wellbeing is a strategic priority for the City Council and forms part of the council’s Housing Strategy. Good quality housing is a major contributing factor in maintaining positive health, including older and more vulnerable tenants.

Councillor Linda Woodings, Portfolio Holder for Planning, Housing and Heritage, said: “Together with Nottingham City Homes and other partners we’re developing a mix of properties across the whole city, from much-needed family housing to bungalows and independent living schemes.

“With an ageing population it’s important that when we’re transforming our neighbourhoods, we ensure we’re creating homes which meet the needs of local people.

“Winwood Court has provided us with an opportunity to create a warm, safe and modern community which will help support some of our older and more vulnerable citizens to stay independent for longer, while freeing up much needed family housing for those who need it.”

At the opening, NCH and the council will be burying a time capsule to mark 100 years of council housing. Winwood Court is the first homes to be completed during the centenary year and to mark this occasion residents have helped to fill the capsule, which will buried and hopefully dug up in another 100 years.

Cllr Woodings added, “Nottingham’s council housing story is an important part in the city’s past, present and future. I’m really proud that we are marking the start of that journey on the sites where new council homes are being created across the city today”.

“Affordable, good quality council housing is as important now as it was a hundred years ago, with growing demand as the cost of renting or buying privately soars. This remains a priority for the City Council and Nottingham City Homes, so together we continue to build new homes, improve existing ones and ensure tenants are happy.”

Nick Murphy, Chief Executive at Nottingham City Homes, said: “The opening of Winwood Court is an important milestone for us as we celebrate 100 years of council housing.  We are burying the time capsule here to mark this historic event, and also making a statement that we are looking to the future as well. 

“We hope we have created somewhere people are proud to live in at Winwood Court, in the most beautiful setting of the park. The rooftop garden gives one of my favourite views of the city. I have already had lots of positive comments about the flats, many people can’t believe they are council housing.  

“I’d like to say a huge thank you to the existing residents of Woodthope and Winchester Courts for their support and patience while they lived through the construction of the new homes.  They have been fantastic, and I know they will enjoy the new communal facilities here as well.”

Stuart Kerr, operations director at Willmott Dixon, said: “It’s been a pleasure working with Nottingham City Homes to create this fantastic facility for residents in the local community.

“At Willmott Dixon, we are committed to creating buildings that improve the lives of local people. During our projects, one of our main priorities is to ensure that we leave a positive lasting legacy. We’re really proud to have been involved in a project like this, especially as we were able to score 45 on the Considerate Constructor Scheme – a score that is rare on a project of this scale.”