A £15m specialist ‘dementia village’ is to be built near Canterbury in a first for the UK.
The 15-acre facility, which was inspired by a visit to a Hogeweyk dementia village in the Netherlands, is expected to be completed by the end of 2020.
Simon Wright, chief executive of developer Corinthian, told The Times: “What struck us was how unrecognisable dementia sufferers’ lives were at Hogeweyk compared to those I’ve met in England: what they saw there reduced some of the care staff who visited to tears.”
The development model, which is designed to allow people living with dementia to live independently as possible, will offer the opportunity for residents to volunteer at a shop or café.
Commenting further on his Hogeweyk site visit, Simon added: “I was sitting in the coffee shop and after a while I realised I was being served by one of the residents who was volunteering there. It’s an incredibly well designed and secure community with green space, where residents can stay physically mobile and mentally active.”
The 250-home dementia community in Kent will part of Corinthian’s plans for 4,000 homes, which it hopes will be approved in May.
Homes will vary in size with people housed together in groups based on their shared interests and level of condition in order to encourage a sense of community.
Care will be provided by provider Avante.