A MULTI-MILLION pound ‘care village’ for older people in Swadlincote has welcomed its first residents.
Oaklands Village offers independent living for people aged 55 and over.
Building work on the £20 million complex off Hall Farm Road started in 2010, and the centre officially opened its doors last Wednesday.
So far 35 people have moved in, with some renting and others buying homes at the 88-apartment purpose-built sheltered scheme.
The village boasts its own hairdressers, restaurant, bar, bistro, gym and convenience store.
Great grandmother Elsie Payne, who will celebrate her 100th birthday this summer, rents a two-bedroom apartment at Oakland Village and was one of the first tenants to move in.
She said: “I had a bad fall where I was living before and ended up in hospital for three weeks.
“When I came here, I was frightened and nervous because it had damaged my confidence and I felt like I’d lost my independence.
“But the support workers are golden and all the other staff have been wonderful too. It really is a marvellous place. The care is second to none and there will be lots going on once it’s all finished.
“Everything is on the doorstep and you don’t have to worry about things like cooking meals. The restaurant does beautiful food and the hairdressers is great.
“I’m very happy here. It really is out of this world.”
Karen Jones, head of tenancy support at Trident Reach, a charity that provides many services at Oakland Village, said: “Oakland Village offers a fabulous range of supported accommodation, services and facilities for older people. The idea is to cater for all levels of support needs in a welcoming, community setting.
“Support is always available to enable residents to live independently, but with the peace of mind that there is always someone there if they need them.
“It is the first time Trident Reach has managed these types of social businesses – including the hairdressers and restaurant – on such a large scale, but they provide a wonderful mix of facilities literally on residents’ doorsteps.”
The centre was opened by Derbyshire county councillor Charles Jones.