Tolent delivered St. Cuthbert’s Close, a retirement living development to the market town of Hexham, comprising 38 high-specification apartments for the over 55s.
The homes were built to suit the diverse community in Hexham, with all apartments available for affordable rent on the site of a former 1960s bedsit accommodation block.
The project was procured via a two-stage tender, which Tolent was named as a preferred contractor in November 2017. The two-stage tender was managed through a PCSA which lasted from November 2017 until the award of the main building contract in August 2018.
The majority of the apartments were two-bedroom properties and 10 of the apartments were one-bedroom properties. To ensure the future residents of the apartments could have ease of access to local amenities of Hexham town centre, a new entrance to the building was formed which also allowed easy access for visitors.
The building consisted of two and three-storeys, transforming the brownfield site’s sloping landscape by staggering the building to adapt to the steep slope; creating apartments with a rural backdrop of fields and tree-clad slopes and views of the town.
To capitalise on the sloping site, a communal balcony for residents was also incorporated into the design; offering a unique and relaxing space for residents to socialise as well as impressive views.
The building offered the same number of apartments as the demolished bedsit, but to considerably higher quality and in line with current space, design and quality standards, providing more spacious apartments which extended the building footprint to the site boundary.
The scheme made a significant improvement to the quality of the previous accommodation on the site by providing modern, spacious apartments. Furthermore, as the scheme was situated within the conservation area of Hexham, the quality of materials, design and finish of the building was paramount.
The façade comprised locally sourced stone which is used extensively throughout the conservation area. The local stone was also used to provide a front boundary to the development in keeping with the site’s neighbouring context.
As part of our scope of works, Tolent constructed and fitted-out a one-bedroom and a two-bedroom show apartment. As part of the fit-out, we provided all furniture to communal areas and corridors, working closely with the client to ensure the fit-out met their detailed specification.
The project at St. Cuthbert’s Close is a fine example of Tolent’s ability to deliver high-quality apartments for the over 55s to a challenging, tight and sloping site; working in close collaboration with the client to develop an outline of the standard specifications for homes for rent and to purchase through shared ownership.