Hong Kong housing delegation visits flagship retirement living scheme in Nottingham

A delegation of housing professionals from Hong Kong was in Nottingham last week (7 July) for a VIP tour of Abbey Lodge, a retirement living scheme for the over 55s in Beeston, owned and operated by social housing provider Stonewater.

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The delegation from the Hong Kong Housing, who are members of the Chartered Institute of Housing Asia Pacific branch, was eager to learn more about Stonewater’s recently-refurbished assisted living project in Charles Avenue, which was a finalist in the International Design Excellence Awards.

The Hong Kong visitors toured Abbey Lodge, an 88-home residential apartment complex, which has been significantly transformed from its tired and dated look, to a modern and welcoming assisted living scheme for older people in the community. The sort of home that residents can be proud to bring family and friends to visit.

During their tour of the facilities, the visitors and their Stonewater counterparts were able to discuss housing matters and share knowledge and expertise of supported housing and housing for older people in their respective countries.

“What makes these international visits so valuable is the opportunity to share information about housing provision in our countries and learn from each other’s best practices and successes,” says Sue Shirt, Stonewater Executive Director for Housing. “We really enjoyed meeting and hosting our Hong Kong housing colleagues and showing them around Abbey Lodge. I hope we were able to give them an insight into the housing sector here in England, the challenges we face in delivering social and affordable housing and some of the innovative strategies we’re adopting to address these.”

Judy Waugh, Director of Membership and Education at the Chartered Institute of Housing, which arranged the visit, says: “We think it’s really important to use our international links to

bring together housing professionals from across the world so they can share their knowledge, expertise and experience. People who work in housing are committed to improving people’s lives and communities, no matter where we are based – and we are facing many of the same challenges, so there is so much we can learn from each other.”