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Residents' fears over future of former sheltered housing in Winchester
HOUSING bosses have agreed to move residents out of a Winchester care home and will now consider alternative uses for the site.
Victoria House will no longer provide sheltered housing for the elderly, but housing chiefs were warned they could face a backlash from nearby residents.
At housing committee meeting, Cllr Dominic Hiscock urged caution when deciding future uses for the site.
He said: “The idea that as a result there could be an even higher density of people needing support in that area would be met by residents with disbelief.”
The closure of Victoria House is a response to the county council’s requirement that ‘Extra Care’ tenants – elderly people living in self-contained homes with a legal right to occupy the property – should be upgraded from studio accommodation to one-bedroom flats.
Cllr Hiscock’s concerns come in the wake of an August report by the Hampshire Chronicle , which brought to light residents’ anger at anti-social behaviour around the city centre – behaviour locals felt was coming from support centres for the homeless.
Cllr Hiscock fears the site could now be used as ‘move on’ accommodation for homeless people seeking to settle and re-integrate into society, arguing it is too near to other support sites to be suitable. Addressing the committee, he said: “Before any decision is made you need to go and look at it and you need to talk to residents and the people who work there.”