Kendal is readying to welcome more over-55s into social housing as the Kendal Almshouse Charity kick-starts redevelopments.

With the high demand for social housing surpassing supply significantly in the North West, the charity has initiated work to double the number of units in one of its central sites.

Social housing in the UK is a form of public sector housing which is rented at low rates to individuals and families who can't afford to rent at market rates or to buy their own homes.

It is provided by local authorities and housing associations, generally to those most in need or vulnerable.

The Chair of Kendal Almshouse Charity, Peter Ducksbury, said “I am delighted to see the project get off the ground after a lot of hard work by many people, for which I am very grateful.”

Promising a greener living solution, these new units will feature energy efficiency at their core.

Prospective inhabitants can look forward to dwellings armed with one bedroom, a bathroom, and an open-plan living, kitchen, and dining area, all benefiting from high thermal efficiency, air source heating, and solar panels for power generation.

The redevelopment is happening behind Kendal’s WWII Memorial Garden on Romney Road, which originally was held by Kendal War Memorial Trust Fund but was transferred to Kendal Almshouse Charity in 2014.

The site was originally home to a bungalow named Romleigh, built in 1955 and inhabited by a single family until 2019.

Following the bungalow's vacation, Kendal Almshouse Charity roped in specialists including independent property consultants H&H Land & Estates, to weigh their options between upgrading the existing dwelling or entirely redeveloping the site.

The Westmorland Gazette: The original bungalow

Considering the derelict state of the old building and the land's potential for enhancement, it was decided to raise two new one-bedroom bungalows after the demolition of the existing one.

The journey towards the redevelopment was impeded several times over the past three years, attributable to various impediments and recent global events.

Local builders Fylde Joinery & Building Services Ltd eventually landed the contract and are currently progressing on site.

Expected to wrap up around April 2024, Kendal Almshouse Charity will be inviting applications for potential occupants close to the completion date.