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Home to be given the Royal treatment

PUBLISHED: 20:30 12 March 2002 | UPDATED: 11:32 03 March 2010

FRAIL and elderly residents in Felixstowe are looking forward to the official opening of their new home – which is set for the Royal seal of approval.

The Duchess of Gloucester will visit the resort next week to cut the ribbon on the new £2.

FRAIL and elderly residents in Felixstowe are looking forward to the official opening of their new home – which is set for the Royal seal of approval.

The Duchess of Gloucester will visit the resort next week to cut the ribbon on the new £2.5 million Margery Girling House sheltered complex.

It will be a busy day for the Duchess in the area as she is also opening the new £1.5m environmentally-friendly Cedarwood Primary School, at Kesgrave, before going on to Clacton to open the Tendring Day Centre.

At Felixstowe, she will be shown around the new Margery Girling House, which includes a project to help people with senile dementia.

The scheme in Gosford Way, Old Felixstowe, is the first of its kind in the area and is known as a "very sheltered complex".

It enables those with mild dementia to live independently in self-contained flats in a safe and secure environment.

Part of a 31-bedsit sheltered complex was demolished to make way for the new building, which is a joint project between Suffolk Coastal Council, the county council and the Flagship Housing Group.

The group's Suffolk Heritage housing association raised more than £900,000 through private finance while the district council provided £1.54m of the costs.

The new block contains one-bed and two-bed self-contained flats, while the rest of the building has been converted into self-contained flats with a larger lounge and communal facilities.

Eight flats have been included to meet the needs of people with mild dementia and space has been provided for them to move around freely, and a secure outside area where they can walk and sit.

The Duchess, whose husband the Duke of Gloucester is a grandson of George V and a first cousin to the Queen, will open the two-storey complex and then meet some of its residents, who will show her around their flats and talk about the care they receive.

She will also meet council and housing association officials to discuss the project and future provision for care.

At Cedarwood primary in Ropes Drive, Kesgrave, she will be greeted by excited pupils at the new school, which has been designed with a green roof covered in a special blanket, chosen for its ecological benefits and low maintenance.

As well as insulating the building – keeping it cool in summer and warm in winter – it will attract many types of birds, butterflies and insects.

The Duchess will learn all about how the building, designed by county council architects, has been engineered to be energy-efficient as well as beneficial to the environment and wildlife.

WEBLINK

www.royal.gov.uk


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