Plans for new Furzedown homes will help residents with physical and learning disabilities in Wandsworth

Demand for supported housing in Wandsworth could be eased thanks to plans for new houses for people with physical and learning disabilities in Furzedown.

The proposal for seven flats, which will provide 24-hour care services for people with physical and learning disabilities, received support from Wandsworth Council’s Housing and Regeneration Overview and Scrutiny Committee last week.

Tim Nicholls, policy manager at the National Autistic Society, welcomed the plans.

He said: “We know that some autistic people will need to be supported in and will benefit from specialist housing like this.

“More than 1 in 100 people are on the autism spectrum, and each autistic person will have different needs and abilities.

“Some autistic people may need 24-hour personal care, others may have particular sensory issues, for example with light and sound, which must be taken into account when designing specialist housing for them.”

The proposal, part of a wider council supported housing initiative, will be the fourth development built in the borough since 2009.

The council said the aim is to enable independent living in high quality accommodation within Wandsworth, instead of having to place residents in lower quality residential care outside of the borough.

Councillor Paul Ellis, cabinet member for housing, said: “Wandsworth is one of only a handful of councils in the country looking to develop new supported housing, and I’m delighted that we’re able to help disabled residents maintain their independence in the borough.”

Dawn Warwick, council director of education and adult social services, added that supported housing not only provides a better form of support than residential care, but is also more cost effective.

Mr Nicholls emphasised the importance of providing good quality care, saying he hopes the council will ensure the houses meet the needs of their residents, and that the staff have specific autism training.

The proposed site adjacent to Fordyce House on Colson Way, near Tooting Common.

The plans are subject to planning permission, with redevelopment of the site beginning by 2017.

Featured image courtesy of Jules Joseph via Flickr, with thanks

Related Articles