Retirement village application anticipated

Derelict land in Newton Mearns could soon be the home of a gated community for over 55s.

Whitecraigs Developments Limited has unveiled plans to build a retirement village on the former Victorian dyeworks on Netherplace Road, near Whitecraigs Rugby 

The anticipated application will include a proposal for 300 retirement homes, a 66-bed care home, a village hall, restaurants, a bowling green, tennis courts, allotments, a health centre and more.

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Architect Jon Jewitt has been developing the proposal, which will be the subject of a public meeting next month.

He said: “This is not going to be an old-fashioned nursing home. This is about a very special environment in beautiful surroundings where retired folk can get a new lease of life.

“Whitecraigs Retirement Village is working to set the benchmark for all future retirement and care developments across Scotland.”

Local politicians are less convinced about the proposal.

Eastwood MSP Ken Macintosh told The Extra: “Speculative applications such as this simply create anxiety amongst residents.

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“They do not appear geared to serve our needs but simply motivated by land speculation and profits.”

West of Scotland MSP Jackson Carlaw believes this raises a “bigger question”.

He said: “Do we want our elderly to be part of our community, for new planning applications to provide for appropriate retirement accommodation within the heart of day to day living or do we want the elderly to be segregated into retirement communities?

“I know I would prefer to remain part of the whole community in later life, to mix with all ages and not just my own.

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“These are serious issues and we should be planning for an ever-increasing elderly population now but planning for them to be part of our community life.”

A pre-application notice has been submitted to East Renfrewshire council. A full application is expected in late-May.