Objectors to care home are urged to 'come and see what we do' by Scarborough mental health support service

Inside the main skills centre at Happy Futures in Eastfield
Inside the main skills centre at Happy Futures in Eastfield

A Scarborough-based support specialist has invited those people who objected to its aborted plans to open a care home for people with mental health needs to come and see the work it does in the community.

Happy Futures withdrew its planning application to transform a bungalow in The Intake, Osgodby, for use for three people and their carers this week due in part to objections from more than 20 local residents.

The company has thanked all of those who showed it support but says it will not be going ahead with the planned scheme.

It hopes in the future communities are “more understanding” when it comes to people with mental and complex health needs.

A spokesperson for Happy Futures said: “[Last month] it came to the attention of Happy Futures that the developer of the property, Persimmon Homes (Yorkshire) Limited, had included a restrictive covenant and therefore the property cannot be used for any trade or business purposes.”

After consulting with lawyers and property agents the company withdrew the application this week. In the meantime, the plans had garnered more than 20 objections from people living near to the property and from the local parish council, with concerns ranging from the covenant to parking and traffic.

Some of the objections, however, were about who would be living in the bungalow.

One objector wrote that those in the property could “pose a risk to vulnerable people in the surrounding area depending on their mental state”.

Another felt worried that “mentally disabled residents could cause some concern to young children and elderly people”.

In response, Happy Futures has invited the objectors to come and see the work it does in the community.

The spokesperson added: “Most residents [of Osgodby] are open and happy to share their community with those with additional needs, as per the many positive comments [online].

“Happy Futures would like to thank everyone for their kind words of support and encouragement in the comments on Facebook. We are very happy to see so many people whom are accepting, kind, understanding and willing to open up and share their community with others.

“Happy Futures is a specialist support service with many years of experience.

“As an organisation, we work closely with the local authority and together we always consider all risk factors and will only ever introduce someone into a community if it is safe for all parties to do so.

“In light of the objections and the restrictive covenant on the property, Happy Futures has decided to withdraw its planning application.

“We would, however, like to invite those who have objected and the wider community to visit our main Skills Centre in Eastfield. Through education and information, we hope to break through the stigmas and reservations associated with those with learning disabilities, mental health and complex needs.

“Surrounded by friends and family, close to local services and amenities and with the right level of support, living integrated into a community can greatly add to an individual’s quality of life – one of our main missions at Happy Futures.

“There is a lack of these kinds of services in our local area and we hope that in the near future, communities will be more understanding and accepting of people with additional needs.”