Retirement community in County Down

One of Northern Ireland’s oldest charities, Belfast Central Mission, plans to develop Northern Ireland’s first continuing care retirement community (CCRC) on a six acre site it owns near Millisle in County Down.

The CCRC - known as ‘Copelands’ – has been designed by NorthStar and is being project managed by NorthStar. It is located in a scenic coastal location between Donaghadee and Millisle, County Down; a popular retirement area.

When completed the CCRC will provide:

  • a care home offering 60 units of residential, dementia and nursing care
  • 24 ‘close care’ bungalows providing care and support for older people with a range of needs
  • outreach community support for up to 60 older people in their own homes in the surrounding area.

Danny Sharpe, director of development, NorthStar, says: “The continuum of care model is something we are very keen on. Ever since I saw my elderly neighbours separated for the final years of their lives when he was diagnosed with dementia and was taken away from his wife to a nursing home, I have been a fan of this type of care.

"He was confused and anxious away from the family home they had lived in for 50 years and she was too frail to visit him with any regularity. It was heart-breaking to see. If this model of care had been available, they could have moved together and spent as much time together as they wanted to in a new community but still in their own home.”

The first phase – the 60 bed nursing and specialist dementia care home - is currently under construction and due to open its doors next spring. The second phase of 24 close care bungalows is currently in planning with a decision expected from Ards and North Down Borough Council imminently.