Mayor of Wirral officially opens extra-care development 

The Mayor of Wirral joined residents, partners and the local community to officially open Alpha Living’s £13.2 million Poppyfields development, the largest extra care scheme in Wirral.

Residents at the Saughall Massie based scheme enjoyed afternoon tea and a performance from the Wirral Connected Voices choir. 

Partners attending the opening included Wirral Council, Homes England, Alpha’s main contractor Vistry, architects Pozzoni and private funders Lloyds Bank PLC. 

The land for Poppyfields was acquired from Wirral Council in 2018, with building work starting on site in March 2019 and completion in July 2021. 

All 78 one and two-bed apartments are occupied since Poppyfields opening its doors last summer. On site facilities include a restaurant, a residents’ lounge and hair and beauty salon, with regular social activities. An internal courtyard garden enables residents to get outdoors whatever the time of year.

Alpha Living, which won a UK Housing Award for the Best Older People’s Landlord in November, is the Wirral’s only locally based specialist provider of housing for older people.

At the opening, the Mayor of Wirral, Cllr George Davies said, “This is a key part of Wirral Council’s housing strategy to deliver extra care housing. 

“We conducted a survey of how many people on the Wirral are above the age of 60, which came back as more than 30%. Alpha Living provides round the clock care to those who need it to support them to live an independent life.

“I’m absolutely staggered the way this building has evolved. I’d like to thank all those people who’ve enabled this to happen and would like to officially open this beautiful building.”

Speaking at the opening ceremony, Graeme Foster, CEO of Alpha Living, added, “This is a really proud moment for us; our journey at Poppyfields started five years ago when we saw the site. We’ve been able to deliver on what we promised. 

“Thank you to Wirral Borough Council for all of the support you’ve given us, to Homes England and to Lloyds Bank for understanding us. Thanks also to Vistry and to the residents who are such an important part of this.

“Our own philosophy is about understanding individuals and supporting people to be the best possible version of themselves. This is far more than a building, this is a really happy community.

“We have ambitious growth plans and hope to work in partnership with Wirral Council to provide more extra care developments, with plans at an advanced stage.”

Claire Taylor, Chair of Alpha Living, said, “It’s superb to celebrate the official opening of Poppyfields with partners. Since opening, our dedicated team at Poppyfields has really got to know our residents. We are committed to helping residents to maintain their independence with our support in their own homes. At Alpha, we are passionate about providing our residents with an outstanding service shaped around their needs.”

The Mayor of Wirral Cllr George Davies cuts the ribbon to officially open Alpha Living’s Poppyfields with Lady Mayoress Cath Davies and (L-R) Alpha Living’s Extra Care Manager Andy Keelan and Chief Executive Graeme Foster, with David Craig, of Vistry and Steve Atwell of Lloyds Bank PLC
The Wirral Connected Voices Choir performing at the Poppyfields opening
Alpha Living’s Head of Housing, Care & Support Peter Merity and Alison Williams, Head of Finance and Resources, with Mayor Cllr George Davies, Zoe Carmichael, Head of Asset Management, CEO Graeme Foster, and Lady Mayoress
The Mayor and Lady Mayoress with Graeme Foster talking with residents at the official opening of Poppyfields
Partners from Wirral Council, Homes England, Vistry, Pozzoni and Lloyds Bank PLC at the official opening of Alpha Living’s Poppyfields

Main image: The Mayor and Lady Mayoress talking with Poppyfields residents Sydney and Sylvia Roberts

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