MEMBERS of the Staveley and Ings community will submit a proposal to to restart care provision in the area.

The plan, which will be presented to the County Council on Friday, will demonstrate how the community intends to remodel the Abbey Care Home so that it can continue to provide for its elderly residents.

Fran Richardson, of the Abbey Development Group, said: "This is a great opportunity for us to do something with lasting social and economic benefit.

"The community have got right behind re-thinking the Abbey."

The building in the centre of Staveley has sat empty since 2020, after the County Council could not find a viable way to continue running it.

At the time, A petition by Staveley residents calling for the Council to reconsider their decision gathered more than 1,000 signatures.

The new plans would provide space for 14 elderly residents, and a 'Community Hub' to focus at first on social care needs; physical and health needs; and wider personal wellbeing but a scope to serve the community more generally after some time.

The group have taken advice from a range of experts including: an architect; a surveyor; care providers; health providers; and local businesses. They’ve consulted three times with local residents since April and ay they've found considerable grassroots support.

Ms Richardson continued: "Over 90% of people who responded to a survey earlier this year told us they wanted the Abbey site to continue meeting the needs of our older people.

"They also wanted a community not-for-profit to lead on the development.

"‘Proposals for the New Abbey were met with real interest and enthusiasm. It was great to get such a lot of support, just as we are about to send the proposal in."

Deb Michel, also from the Abbey Development Group, said: "Our proposals show how we can create 14 extra care living apartments for older people from Staveley with Ings and the surrounding parishes.

"As well as that, we hope to develop an innovative Care Hub to support people who live in the apartments and those who prefer to stay in their family homes.

"This will provide a base for carers, a place to come and eat or share time with friends and a place for activities or therapy.

"If there’s a need, the new Abbey Hub will try to provide a space. It will make a significant contribution to the health and wellbeing of everyone in the locality."

The public consultations for the project went well.

A comment submitted in support of the proposals read: "It sounds ideal, and Staveley has established such a caring community that I can see this being a working model."

It wasn't the only supportive comment. Another read: "Excellent idea! We shouldn’t let it go to business people to make a profit out of it. It should be owned by the village."

Many in the area think that there should be local provision of care for residents. Another said: "Important provision for elders to stay in the village."