New care home opens at historic former drill hall

The site dates back to the early 1800s

By Callum Faulds
Tuesday, 5th July 2022, 1:57 pm

A new care home based in Wellingborough’s former Drill Hall was opened yesterday (July 4) by Wellingborough Town Council mayor, Cllr Jonathan Ekins.

The care home named St Heliers, after the first name of the building, is run by Breathe Care Limited and situated in High Street, Wellingborough, opposite Wellingborough United Reformed Church.

It is a new supported living service dedicated to people that have acquired a brain injury or suffered a neurological trauma.

Wellingborough Town Council mayor Jonathan Ekins furthest left with Breathe Care Limited directors

The site has retained its heritage, something that the owners were very keen on preserving. Throughout the redevelopment, each aspect of the building’s rich history was considered, with the front facade being carefully refreshed while retaining its original look.

As well as with St Heliers, also part of the site is Edwards Chambers, a former retail unit built in the early 1800s which has also been restored to its former glory and retained many of its features.

The site now comprises 17 modern, individually designed apartments, combined with state-of-the-art offices that have 24-hour staffing.

Speaking at the opening, Cllr Ekins said: “I remember being younger and coming here when it was having youth clubs… it’s part of us growing up in Wellingborough.

Wellingborough Town Council mayor Jonathan Ekins cutting the ribbon at the care home opening

“I’m really pleased to say that it has been saved from demolition, because that’s what was going to happen with it.

“It’s a fantastic situation we’re in now, where they’ve [Breathe] seen something that a lot of people saw - we’ve got this marvellous development here now.”

Breathe Care Limited chief executive, Stephen Crouch said: “There are very few of these in the UK and it is a real asset to the area for employment and not to forget the regeneration of one of the town’s most important buildings.”

The aspiration for directors Stephen Crouch, Zafir Bhatti, and Stefan Gavin is that the site will now be able to provide a much needed service in the community allowing people to reintegrate and gain independence within their own home.

St Heliers, Wellingborough

Breathe has further sites in the pipeline upcoming for the county. To find out more visit their website.

A look inside one of St Heliers independent living apartments
A look inside one of St Heliers independent living apartments
A look inside one of St Heliers independent living apartments
Edwards Chambers from the front
Edwards Chambers from the back, located adjacent to St Heliers