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Ipswich plans to turn former Victoria Nurseries garden centre into Caring Homes Group elderly home to be discussed





Plans to turn a former garden centre into a 70-bedroom home for the elderly are set to be given the green light – provided a legal agreement is made.

In September, Robert Jeffery, of First Care Homes, part of the Caring Homes Group, sought permission from Ipswich Borough Council (IBC) to build a new three-storey care home in Kettlebaston Way, following the demolition of the existing buildings.

The site once housed Victoria Nurseries, which closed in January last year, after 39 years in business.

The now-closed Victoria Nurseries, in Kettlebaston Way, Ipswich, could give way to a new multi-storey care home. Picture: Google
The now-closed Victoria Nurseries, in Kettlebaston Way, Ipswich, could give way to a new multi-storey care home. Picture: Google

If built, the care home would hire about 65 full-time staff.

Ahead of the authority’s planning and development committee next week, the proposals have been recommended for approval.

The plans for a new care home on this site were first discussed and refused by the council in March of last year due to its scale and lack of adequate parking provision, initially proposed as 30 spaces.

The decision was then appealed in April of the same year and, although the planning inspector concluded the proposals would not harm the surrounding area and would result in economic, social, and environmental benefits, the decision was to dismiss it on the grounds of poor parking provision.

Gardens would be present around the building that would be given different functions for its residents, including sensory experiences.

Specialist dementia care would be located on the first floor, while the second floor would contain more bedrooms.

Ancillary facilities would be in the basement – although ‘key facilities’ would be present on every floor.

A total of 46 objection letters were received throughout a consultation period into the proposals, with residents raising parking, highway safety, and traffic concerns, as well as questioning the need for an additional care home in the area.

Before the proposals are approved, the applicant must complete a legal agreement as well as pay the necessary fees.

A traffic regulation order (£11,500), libraries improvement (£6,300) and a S106 monitoring fee (£476) must be completed, alongside a travel plan evaluation and support contribution (£1,000).