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The proposal

Care UK’s proposals for the redevelopment of the Francis Court care home would deliver the following:

  • A fit-for-purpose 78-bedroom home, which is better able to meet the needs of residents and on-site colleagues. The Government has said that “the need to provide housing for older people is critical”. These proposals will support fulfilling this need and the need for specialist care accommodation.
  • A Travel Plan to influence colleagues and visitors to use sustainable modes of transport to reduce traffic, minimise parking demand, and promote active lifestyles. 
  • As per the existing provision of parking, the care home can be accessed by colleagues and visitors with 29 car parking spaces proposed, including two disabled bays and ample space for cycle parking. There will be an additional ambulance bay and a further enlarged bay for deliveries. The parking area will be immediately to the east side of the building, which will be screened by incorporating new and existing landscaping.
  • Continue to reduce pressure on the local community and health facilities.
  • A new building without the need to use greenfield land, as the proposals will revitalise previously developed land in a sustainable location. 
  • Temporary and permanent local employment – should planning permission be granted, local jobs would be created during the construction phase, and once the new home is built and operational, there would be continued employment on the site.
  • Improved local economic prosperity – the families of residents, and Francis Court colleagues will contribute to Copthorne’s economy, bringing additional expenditure to local shops and amenities. 

The current level of parking provisions on the site will largely remain the same, however a reduced number of rooms proposed in the care home will increase the parking-space-to-bed ratio. The need for parking provision is based on colleagues and visitors, as residents are unlikely to have access to their own vehicles. In Care UK’s experience across its 150+ care homes, this provision will easily hold the number of cars likely to be on site at any one time. 

Care UK is committed to ensuring that its developments have a wider positive impact and strives to achieve the highest level of Biodiversity Net Gain possible. At this stage, the percentage figure is unknown, but the proposals will include a wide range of new ecological enhancements within the design. This includes bird and bat boxes, log piles, and additional planting around the site to attract wildlife.

To ensure the proposals are as sustainable as possible, materials from the existing building will be recycled and renewable energy will be used as part of the heating and hot water provisions of the new care home. Additionally, the thermal efficiency of the walls, windows, and roof in the proposal will reduce heat loss by reducing the air permeability. 

A Construction Management Plan will be put in place as part of any planning application submitted to Mid-Sussex District Council, and will detail how traffic, waste, dust, and noise are managed during the construction phase of the project, to ensure minimal disruption to the surrounding area and community. Should planning permission be granted, and Care UK decide to continue with the proposed development, updates of any road disruption and construction milestones will be fully communicated to those most likely to be affected.

The proposed site plans

The site plan above shows the proposed layout of the redeveloped home, which is similar in size to the existing Francis Court care home. 

The ground floor site plan.

The first floor floor site plan.

The second floor floor site plan.