A proposal to develop the county’s first specialist dementia care village have been announced by Northamptonshire County Council.
The dementia village would enable people with the disease to live independently for longer in a home environment with specialised care and support on site.
Centre of excellence
In partnership with the University of Northampton, the facility would also offer unique research opportunities to look at new ways to tackle the disease with the aim of becoming a centre of excellence for dementia treatment.
The proposal follows the launch of the county council’s accommodation strategy for older people earlier this year, which reflected the growing demand for supported living schemes in Northamptonshire and the rising number of people with dementia.
There are an estimated 7,700 people living with dementia and this number is projected to increase by 45% by the year 2030.
With the highest concentration of people with dementia living in Northampton, it is proposed that the new dementia village would be based at Wootton Hall.
The county council’s Cabinet will be asked next week (Tuesday) to approve the creation of a project board to oversee the scheme and begin work on an outline business plan.
County council cabinet member for adult social care Cllr Bill Parker said: “This is an incredibly exciting project for Northamptonshire and will be the first dedicated dementia care village in Northamptonshire.
“With an increasing number of people in the county suffering from the disease, we want to be at the forefront of dementia research.
“This facility will provide the type of support that people want – state-of-the-art accommodation with care and support on site in an independent living environment.
“I very much looking forward to seeing these plans take shape in the coming months.”
The county council is looking at examples of similar schemes in the UK and Europe on which to model the scheme.
Professor Jacqueline Parkes, dementia specialist at the University of Northampton, said: “This is a unique development for Northamptonshire County Council and the University to lead the future development of dementia care across Northamptonshire.
"The village project will provide an excellent opportunity to work alongside people living with dementia, their carers, and stakeholders to incorporate both contemporary thinking teaching and research expertise in its design, development, and delivery; and therefore, become a centre of excellence.”
If approved next week, a final business case and planning application would be presented to Cabinet next summer, with construction taking place between 2018 and 2020.