DESIGNS for Heathlands residential care home are set to be unveiled in the new year.

The site closed more than three years ago but a multi-million-pound project will see the revamped care facility open with more than 60 new beds.

Speaking at a meeting of the council’s social care committee, health boss councillor Dale Birch suggested planning documents could be submitted in February.

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He added: “It remains positive, the work that is happening.

“The target is to get the planning application whipped into shape, get all the partners there and get on with it.

“Planning in February is the next critical stage.”

The News reported in March Bracknell Forest Council (BFC) would spend £7 million on the project, with a further £3 million coming from the East Berkshire Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG).

The site was shut down in February 2016 after it emerged the care home “did not meet modern standards” and the “cost of operating the care home (was) unsustainable”.

Heathlands is one of five initiatives the authority is currently working on in order to make savings and improve its adult social care provision.

One of these includes looking at how BFC can redevelop The Bridgewell Centre to support adults with learning disabilities as the borough has a number of older residents with these impairments.

Sarah Kingston, programme manager for adults transformation at BFC told councillors: “Their properties are not accommodated to suit their needs so they can live independently.”

She said there was a “real need for this” and proposals are progressing ahead of the development of a business case.

Another scheme proposed to support those with learning disabilities is daytime group activities for residents who “do not all require 1-to-1 support” with a specialist.

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It is hoped these group activities will help to increase participants’ independence and improve young people’s life skills while also helping the council to make a saving in light of a lack of local support.

The Emergency Duty Service is a service operating from Bracknell Forest on behalf of the six Berkshire local authorities, acting as an out of hours call phone line where immediate social care intervention is needed.

This service is being analysed to make sure it is “fit for purpose” and how it could be delivered in the future.

The final scheme is a “funding exercise” to make sure the costs for clients’ care is funded 50 – 50 by Bracknell Forest Council and the CCG and it is currently being implemented.

It was hoped the council would save £1.8 million from its adults’ social care transformation programme last year.

The authority secured almost £900,000 in savings against existing care packages.

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Councillors heard about the schemes BFC is working on as part of its transformation programme, which aims to cut costs in the department and got underway in April 2017, on Thursday, September 5.