Plans revealed to upgrade Ellon sheltered housing

Ellon and District Councillor Rob Merson outside Modley House
Ellon and District Councillor Rob Merson outside Modley House

Plans to upgrade a sheltering housing unit in Ellon has been welcomed by many residents and a local Councillor in the town.

However some tenants are concerned that existing refurbishments have been put to one side.

Residents of the complex attended a meeting to hear Aberdeenshire Council’s plans to convert the unit to ‘very sheltered’ accommodation.

The proposals include the introduction of support staff available round-the-clock, construction to fit a full catering kitchen and extend the lounge area to incorporate a dining room and the installation of a new fire alarm and sprinkler system.

Many tenants expressed their support for the plans, particularly the move to a ‘very sheltered’ complex, which would match their own needs for increased care in the years to come.

Resident, Mrs Robertson, who suffers from progressive multiple sclerosis said: “I was forced to move into alternative accommodation for a time last year because a suitable care package could not be provided at home.

“This news has come to me like a lottery win, because it means that I can now be confident that I can continue to live in my own home.”

Some residents may be temporarily rehoused while refurbishments take place, but nobody would have to move elsewhere permanently, and the introduction of residents requiring ‘very sheltered’ support would be gradual.

But, some residents are concerned that work to replace kitchens in the individual flats would be postponed until after the conversion had been finished.

Another resident, Mrs Halliday said the kitchens desperately need replacing.

She said: “While I would be very happy for Modley House to be converted to ‘very sheltered’ accommodation, it would not be fair if the existing tenants were to be disadvantaged as a result.”

Modley House Residents Social Group secretary, Sheila Brinklow said several residents feel that the kitchens should be upgraded at the same time as the new work is carried out.

Ellon and District Councillor Rob Merson attended the meeting and said that he thinks that there is a simple solution to the issue.

Mr Merson said: “It would seem to me eminently sensible to have that work carried out simultaneously, so that disruption to the lives of these elderly and vulnerable residents is minimised.”

Mr Merson added that he brought up these concerns with senior officers over a year ago, and secured written confirmation that this would be carried out. Another meeting will be held to provide residents with more detail and an update on the proposals.