June 20 2013 Latest news:
BY RICHARD CORNWELL, Felixstowe editor
Friday, November 9, 2012
DEMOLITION work is underway on what was once a flagship development for elderly people.
When it was built in 1968 and opened by the Duchess of Kent, Felixstowe’s 1.3-acre Conford House complex, then council-owned, was one of the first state-of-the-art sheltered complexes in the county.
But now owners Flagship Housing say improving standards of care mean the site in Exmoor Road no longer meets the needs of modern residents.
Contractors have started ripping down the 22 flats, communal areas and seven bungalows and clearing the site ready for redevelopment.
The work – which was delayed for five months after initial salvage work was carried out and then delays over disconnecting the gas – is being carried out swiftly, the heavy machinery making light work of the buildings.
Flagship has permission to build 14 bungalows for the elderly, with six specifically for wheelchair-bound people, on the site.
Tenants of the complex were moved out to new accommodation with the site standing empty for four years, awaiting demolition.
Suffolk Coastal MP Therese Coffey has welcomed the development of better permanent accommodation for older and disabled people.
“The building work is due to start in early 2013 and completed in 2014. I will be keeping an eye on this to make sure Flagship stick to their promise,” she said.
■ Should these buildings have been refurbished rather than demolished? Write to Your Letters, Ipswich Star, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich, IP4 1AN, or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org