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Ipswich former Kent Hill Residential Home in Woodbridge Road could be used for supported living

Plans to turn a former residential home in Ipswich into supported living have been lodged – just months after plans to turn the building into homeless accommodation were withdrawn.

Grosvenor Hill Social Impact Group is seeking permission from Ipswich Borough Council to turn 434 Woodbridge Road, the former Kent Lodge Residential Home, into 15 supported living units.

If approved, it would be leased to United Response, a charity which looks after those with additional needs, such as autism, mental health concerns and physical disabilities.

Plans were submitted to turn 434 Woodbridge Road into supported living units. Picture: Google
Plans were submitted to turn 434 Woodbridge Road into supported living units. Picture: Google

This comes after separate plans from MXL Capital, which sought to turn the building into homeless accommodation, were withdrawn earlier this year following complaints from neighbours.

Planning permission was granted to turn it into 13 supported living units in 2018, with the later withdrawn plans seeking to turn this into 29 units.

Suffolk County Council has expressed support for the new proposals as it would match their delivery of its aims for care and support.

The former Kent Lodge Residential Home is a 19th century building that has been extended over the years.

Planning documents stated that the applicant is also seeking to make alterations to the outside of the building, including replacing windows and doors, and creating alternate access for vehicles.

The applicant hoped the previous permission for supported living would mean the proposals would be approved.

To make it suitable for supported living, both the inside and outside of the building would need to be refurbished.

New vehicle access would be gained from Gordon Road, and removed from the Woodbridge Road side.

An ecological report found the proposals would be a net negative for biodiversity, and suggested planting shrub use of boundary trees to make it a net-gain.