Diamond Avenue children’s care home plans revealed

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Developers of a controversial new children’s home in Ashfield have launched an exhibition after residents tried to block their plans.

G4S Children’s Homes will give information about their plans to local residents at Trinity Methodist Church on Wednesday.

Plans for the house at 127 Diamond Avenue to be converted into a five-bedroomed facility sparked protests from residents earlier this year.

Local homeowners and councillors claimed that the care home would cause ‘chaos and disruption’.

Now Paul Cook, managing director of G4S Children’s Homes, says they want to give people the opportunity to find out more.

He said: “This would be a normal family home for children whose circumstances mean they can’t live at home or with foster families – often as a result of situations out of their control.

“We all have a responsibility to provide safe, positive environments for children from all backgrounds – and we’re keen to talk to as many local people as possible about how this new children’s home can be a positive part of the community.”

The exhibition will give people a chance to learn more about the home and how it will operate - as well as giving them the opportunity to ask questions.

The G4S team have sent around 100 letters to local homeowners inviting them along to the event, but it is open to all other members of the public.

Nottinghamshire County Council has agreed with G4S Children’s Homes to provide up to 12 places for young people in small homes, each with no more than six beds.

Steve Edwards, service director for children’s social care, says that the council is trying to get the children living as close to their local communities as possible.

Ashfield District Council’s Jacqueline James is the summit ward councillor, and is also from Kirkby.

She said: “I welcome G4S consulting with the local residents in relation to the proposed children’s home on Diamond Avenue. It is important all members of our community have an appropriate and safe home to live in, this however means looking after both our children as well as the existing community.

“After discussing the initial plans with local residents I understand the concerns relate to the appropriateness of the site specifically relating to the lack of local amenities for teenagers and concerns relating to community cohesion.

“It is disappointing G4S didn’t previously consult with either the local council for appropriate sites or the local residents prior to the submission of the initial planning application.”

The public exhibition is being held at Trinity Methodist Church, Diamond Avenue, NG17 7GN on Wednesday 15th July from 4.30pm to 7pm.