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Further Progress for Kirkby Town Centre

by Jonathan Kearney

Knowsley Council’s Cabinet has tonight endorsed plans to dispose of land at St Chad’s Drive in order to bring forward a proposal for much-needed retirement homes in Kirkby Town Centre.

McCarthy and Stone Retirement Lifestyles Limited have expressed interest in acquiring the site to construct 53 new homes which will offer specialist provision for people aged 55 and over.

The development will include shared ownership and give older home owners the option to continue own their own homes in a specialist scheme.

By providing shared ownership for older people, the proposal could help people to “right size” and thereby also free up housing in the Borough which is more suited to families and younger people.

Demand in Knowsley for such properties has been identified through the Council’s Housing Needs Assessment and the development of the Knowsley Housing Strategy 2022-2027.

The plans would bring a prime site back into use and would also help to create greater footfall in Kirkby Town Centre.

The 0.89 acre site comprises the former St Chad’s Clinic.  More recently, the site has been used to provide providing temporary car parking whilst the nearby retail development was being constructed.  Now that the retail facilities are completed and open, there are 460 permanent car parking spaces (free for up to three hours) alongside the nearby multi-storey car park which provides a further 372 spaces and will be benefitting from a major refurbishment over the coming months.

Terms and legal agreements will now progress, and the development will be subject to a full planning application which will involve public consultation in line with planning procedures.