The Retirement Villages Group (RVG), the UK’s leading provider of luxury retirement communities, has acquired a new site as part of its €235.6m (£200m) expansion programme to develop more than 500 new independent living residential units in the South East of England over the next 5 years.
The company has secured a 10.5 acre site, subject to planning permission, at Albourne, near Henfield, West Sussex, for a new Retirement Village community. The site was formerly home to the Hazleden’s Nursery.
It is anticipated a planning application will be submitted by RVG during the summer this year, following a public exhibition to present the proposals to develop a luxury retirement community incorporating around 98 residential units, which will be predominantly 2 bed apartments and cottages. In keeping with the company’s model for creating high end senior living villages, the development will also include a restaurant and bar, library and retail amenities, with residents supported by on-site care services when needed.
RVG operates 14 high-end retirement villages focused in the South of England. The new Albourne site is one of seven new locations that will be delivered over the next five years, representing the company’s largest development programme in its 35-year history.
The development pipeline is made up of 500 new residential units and 160 care beds across prime South East locations including Gradwell, East Sussex; Merstham, Surrey; Saffron Walden, Essex; West Malling, Kent; and Shiplake in Oxfordshire. Planning consent has already been secured on two of the sites, while the others are being advanced through the planning process.
RVG is also embarking on a £20m expansion and improvement programme at eight of its existing 14 villages, adding a further 228 units to its existing 1,274 units and over 400 care beds. This includes Moat Park in Great Easton, Essex, where planning consent has just been secured for nine cottages, with construction expecting to start on site in March this year.
William Crawford, Group Development Director, Retirement Villages Group, said: “The acquisition of the Albourne site is an important milestone in the delivery of our development pipeline. A key characteristic of all our sites is strategic location and connectivity to local communities, and Albourne is no exception. We are looking forward to progressing the planning application following our public consultation.
“We have a growing portfolio of market leading luxury retirement communities and are well placed to capitalise on the senior living sector, which we believe offers the greatest growth potential in UK real estate, and is set to follow in the footsteps of the US and become a major market.”