Dagenham development includes 15 homes for people with autism

Brocklebank Lodge is up for redevelopment. Picture: Google

Brocklebank Lodge is up for redevelopment. Picture: Google - Credit: Archant

A plan to build more than 50 homes has been given a green light by the town hall.

The scheme would see 53 new dwellings built where Brocklebank Lodge now stands and provide 15 one-bedroom homes for people with autism.

The former care home is currently used for temporary accommodation for homeless households and rough sleepers.

However, emergency accommodation is expected to move to a refurbished Gray’s Court hospital early next year, with the current building’s demolition freeing up the site in Becontree Avenue.

The development is set to be completed over two phases, with homes built in the first and offered at below market rent.

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This phase would be followed up with a community hub measuring 1,500 square metres, though the town hall is still working on bridging a finance gap.

Cllr Cameron Geddes, speaking at a virtual town hall meeting on Tuesday, November 17, said: “This an excellent project for all concerned.

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“There is the understandable anxiety – and I understand, respect and share it – that we do need to go ahead and get the community space as well as the residential.”

He pledged to try and get the community facilities as quickly as possible.

Cllr Maureen Worby welcomed the scheme, saying the specialist housing is “much needed” and would help to alleviate pressure on the council’s coffers.

“I don’t think people understand how costly out of borough placements are and these new properties mean we can bring people back home to give them a better quality of life with the added bonus for us [that] it won’t cost quite as much,” she added.

Council leader, Cllr Darren Rodwell, agreed with fellow cabinet members that he too did not want to see the second phase delayed and for the hub to happen at Andrew’s Corner.

“It’s a very exciting prospect. What we’re able to do with the third sector will be quite fantastic for residents that need that support,” he said.

He added that the town hall is on the approach to building 2,000 “truly affordable” homes in Barking and Dagenham.

“It’s good to hear we can bring residents who are vulnerable back into the borough,” he said, before pledging to look into the housing of people with additional needs.

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