We surveyed 1,500 retirees to find out their favourite hobbies. Here, they reveal the results and discuss the benefits of starting a hobby in retirement. ...Read more
Finding the right site for a new development, close to facilities and with easy accessibility, is the job of Conor Garvey, senior land buyer at McCarthy & Stone. His team secured a site in the town of Chipping Norton, which will house a Retirement Living PLUS development plus Lifestyle Living independent bungalows and houses, all opening in summer 2018.
Q: How do you choose a site?
A: ‘It’s all about the location. It has to be in a desirable area that potential homeowners dream of living in. We look at towns mainly, with good local facilities and within easy walking distance of shops, restaurants, banks and doctors. Our sales database also shows us areas customers are interested in and we look at sites in those areas.’
Q: Why Chipping Norton?
A: ‘A percentage of the sites we look at are in aspirational areas. We already have a few Cotswolds developments, in Stow-on-the Wold, Moreton-in-Marsh, Cirencester, Stroud and Tetbury; so Chipping Norton was the obvious next step. We found a site that was previously owned by Parker Knoll furniture. It’s a perfect location with great local facilities – just a half-mile walk to town – and there are good transport links too.’
Q: What about your homeowners’ specific requirements?
A: ‘Making sure that the location will fit our homeowners’ needs is a game-changer when it comes to which sites we pick. Accessibility is really important. Making sure that pedestrian walkways are wide enough for motorised buggies or wheelchairs is a high priority, and the Chipping Norton site fits the bill with wide, flat pavements.’
Q: Being sensitive to the local area must be important.
A: ‘Yes. We work closely with local councils to ensure we meet planning requirements and have public consultation meetings. At Chipping Norton, we have had pre-planning meetings with the district council and local town council. We have to ensure we fit in with the area’s policies and balance the build with carefully chosen materials to match the local vernacular. Some of the details – the colour of the stone, the roof tiles, the slates and the windows – will reflect the local style. Our architects will look at matching the pitch of the roofs and window elevations to typical Cotswold buildings, for example.’
Q: How long does it take from finding the site to planning stage?
A: ‘It varies a lot. Some sites will already have planning permission, so that speeds up the process. With Chipping Norton, I started looking at the site in August 2015. It can take a year to get permission. You can’t rush it. Ensuring a good site for McCarthy & Stone homeowners is all about planning. It needs to be done properly to make sure we have the support of the district council and local people when we get to the committee stage.’
Once the plans are approved, the building team swing into action. Oak Grange is a Retirement Living development now completed
in Cheshire. Phil Hamlin, McCarthy & Stone senior site manager, talks us through it.
Q: Oak Grange is in a beautiful setting. How has it been to build on?
A: ‘It was previously The Royal British Legion social club. It’s in Hartford village, surrounded by residential housing, with mature trees on two sides and a tennis and bowling club on the other. Luckily, we’ve had good weather so far. We try to limit disruption to the local community as much as possible so, for example, timing deliveries not to clash with drop-off times at the school opposite.’
Q: Is there a set pattern to a build?
A: ‘Not really – every build is different. We use traditional methods with brickwork and concrete blockwork, but we also incorporate other materials, such as rendering and panelling. At Oak Grange, our main material is a smoked red facing brick with composite panelling on the top of the second floor. We can have up to 50 people working on site.’
Q: What about the gardens?
A: ‘The development will be landscaped towards the end of the programme. The design takes into account the existing trees – majestic horse chestnuts and silver birch.’
Q: How long will the build take?
A: ‘It’s scheduled for 49 weeks, with the first homeowners in spring. Our show complex will be open eight weeks earlier, so you can see how your future home could be.
The flagship Bowes Lyon Court Retirement Living PLUS development of 62 apartments is set in Poundbury, Prince Charles’ urban extension of Dorchester, which was visited by Her Majesty The Queen in October when she unveiled a statue of the Queen Mother. Regional sales and marketing director Kim Caldwell discusses the development.
Q: What influenced the theme?
A: ‘We used neutral tones and soft pastels to reflect the Dorset countryside. The sprigged wallpaper in the homeowners’ lounge and dining areas is set off by lilac and turquoise in the upholstery and the Shaker-inspired coffee tables.’
Q: How do you make the shared areas welcoming?
A: ‘The communal areas are central to the development. The atrium is a great meeting point, with USB ports, charging points and Wi-Fi, where homeowners often gather before lunch. They can also relax on the outdoor terrace. It’s the little touches that make a difference, from the stylish lanterns in the club lounge to the cosy library. There is also the snooker room and a Wellbeing Suite where you can relax with a treatment.’
Q: What special features can homeowners look out for?
A: ‘Everything is designed for ease, comfort and safety. You’ll find plug sockets at waist height, lifts to all floors and wide corridors, which are easy to move around. The apartments have mid-height Neff ovens, lever mixer taps, video door entry, a 24-hour call system, smoke and intruder alarms, and illuminated light switches to the bathroom and main bedroom.’
Q: As this is an extension of Prince Charles’ Poundbury development, did visual elements have to fit in?
A: ‘Yes, the façade was produced by Ben Pentreath, who works with the Duchy of Cornwall on most buildings in Poundbury. The Duchy approved our technical drawings before we began work, and our heating system is supplied by its biogas source.’
The show apartments at Bowes Lyon Court are now available to view. Click here to find out more.
We surveyed 1,500 retirees to find out their favourite hobbies. Here, they reveal the results and discuss the benefits of starting a hobby in retirement. ...Read more
We’ve taken a look at how our properties can help people feel younger and got our residents to explain what it means to them to be ‘young at heart’. ...Read more
There are many benefits of owning a dog in retirement but getting a four-legged friend isn’t a decision to take lightly. This is why we’ve put together this guide using the advice of experts to help you make a decision. ...Read more
Our in-house catering team have been working behind the scenes to bring new services into our Retirement Living PLUS developments for our customers to enjoy ...Read more
Leslie and Ann Harpin, 87 and 81 recently made the decision to move to McCarthy and Stone’s Isabella House Retirement Living development in Hertford. The couple are not only enjoying spending more time together, they also have a new group of friends who they refer to as their extended family. ...Read more
Ultradistance and 50-times marathon runner Marie Caldwell inspires and motivates her fellow residents to keep fit and active. ...Read more
The loss of a loved one is such an emotional experience for the family without the added stress of them being faced with selling their home. But if you need to sell your property, McCarthy & Stone Resales can take care of everything. ...Read more
Renting can be perceived as just a temporary housing option, especially to those who have always owned their own home. But not if you rent an apartment with McCarthy & Stone.
Find out how renting with McCarthy & Stone has enabled two long time friends' friendship to blossom. ...Read more
There are many ways you can feel younger in your retirement we've consulted with an expert life coach to learn more about the benefits this can bring. ...Read more
This January and February you could make the most of some great offers at selected developments as part of our ‘Grow Young with Us’ campaign. ...Read more
The period after Christmas is a great time to declutter. Here, McCarthy & Stone have spoken to a number of experts to discover the best decluttering tips. ...Read more
McCarthy & Stone Resales is having a positive impact when it comes to supporting those who wish to resell their retirement properties, as well as helping new customers experience what a retirement living lifestyle is all about. ...Read more
Christmas is just around the corner so ring in the Christmas season with these crowd-pleasing cocktail recipes. ...Read more
We work hard to keep our residents warm and secure in the winter months and to find out more about how our teams manage this, we spoke to our Operations Director, David Hockaday. ...Read more
We believe that there's nothing better than snuggling up under the warming glow of fairy lights and the Christmas tree, with a seasonal drink in hand in front of the TV. ...Read more
At McCarthy & Stone, we value charity work all year round. However, we know that it’s especially important during the festive season; particularly for those who are less fortunate. ...Read more
Determining what is best for an elderly parent can always be a hard burden to bear. This was a decision Eva Walters faced when her father, Alan’s health began to deteriorate. ...Read more
Our Christmas dinner events are always a highlight of the calendar year at McCarthy & Stone. To learn more about them, we spoke to our Catering Director Andrew Rowlands. ...Read more
For retired retail manager, Marion Hughes and her late husband Edward, when it came to making the decision to downsize from their three bedroom home for 60 years in Edgware, they thought long and hard about it. ...Read more
Wine and cheese can be a delectable festive treat and getting the right pairing can be easier than you think. So, to point you in the right direction we’ve given our advice on some of the best wines to go with each type of cheese. ...Read more
Here we speak to Trudi Chatwin, daughter of Eugene Roberts who rents her apartment at Williams Place, about why renting was the best option for her mother. ...Read more
Ron Daykin from Redditch moved to McCarthy & Stone’s Milward Place development at the end of October, where he now rents an apartment. ...Read more
We’re hosting a series of ‘At Home’ Christmas events for our residents and their families. Find out more about what’s happening in our roundup blog post. ...Read more
With the countdown to Christmas now on, it’s time to start thinking about Christmas gifts. There are those people who buy and wrap everything by October, and then there’s the rest of us, who possibly leave things till the last minute. Well, why not get organised this year? ...Read more
Make the most of your time indoors this winter by crafting yourself some great festive items. Here, we have rounded up five crafting ideas for you to try. ...Read more
To help make your home full of Christmas cheer, we’ve spoken to Clare Gibson, Head of Interior Design at McCarthy & Stone who’s provided her top Christmas decorating tips. ...Read more
A Retirement Living PLUS property could be perfect for your retirement. Here, McCarthy & Stone explain what Retirement Living PLUS is really like by answering some key questions and by speaking with our residents. ...Read more
McCarthy & Stone discuss how you can find and pick antiques with James Constantinou from Prestige Pawnbrokers and TV’s Posh Pawn. ...Read more
Another season has flown by and now the summer heat has faded with the turn of autumn. With the cooler days and longer nights, our gardens are transforming into a rich tapestry of colour, from fiery reds and oranges to majestic golds. ...Read more
Home recycling is incredibly important. To coincide with National Recycling Week, McCarthy & Stone spoke to First Mile to see how more people can recycle at home. ...Read more
For many people, collecting and eating wild plants and fungi has been part of life since childhood, filling punnets with wild edibles from ripening berries to sweet chestnuts. ...Read more
At McCarthy & Stone, we like to make the process of selling apartments simple. To help you, we’ve put together this guide on how to sell your apartment. ...Read more
Selling a family home can be difficult, but at McCarthy & Stone, we’re here to help. Read our guide on how to sell your house today. ...Read more
If the time has come for you to downsize and you want to be able to move quickly and easily, then Part Exchange is a good option to consider ...Read more
We unearth some of the reasons why people choose to rent during their retirement and how that benefits them. ...Read more
It's not easy making the decision to downsize but there are plenty of positives to making the move. ...Read more
Give your home a new lease of life with a new look inspired by the top interior trends for Summer 2019. ...Read more
Here in Britain, we love a holiday, but the journeys involved – especially when heading abroad – can be challenging at times. So, we’ve put this guide together to explain how you can make your holiday travel more comfortable. ...Read more
Discover how slow travel can help you get more from your holidays and return feeling refreshed and with renewed energy. ...Read more
Whilst there are most certainly plenty of benefits to owning a home during your retirement, renting is another fantastic option that provides many with a flexible and easy way to make the most of their retirement. ...Read more
We love spending time outside, and what a great time of the year to get out and about with your grandchildren. Spend some quality time together, make memories which will last a lifetime and make the most of the great British sunshine! ...Read more
Find out why Yorkshire is considered by many to be the best county to retire in, including the residents at some of our Yorkshire retirement communities. Find out more. ...Read more
This July it’s ‘National Picnic Month’, so to give you a little inspiration for this we’ve explored everything you need to know about hosting the perfect summer picnic. ...Read more
McCarthy & Stone homeowner Sylvie Morgan recounts her tour of the UK, visiting developments and staying in our guest suites whilst visiting friends and family. ...Read more
They may not seem the most likely champions in the digital counter- revolution but jigsaw puzzles are certainly playing their part. ...Read more
The summer season is packed with a variety of events to appeal to a range of interests and ages. Savour the delights of new and exciting cuisine, enjoy the thrill of world-class horse racing and discover the latest super cars, at events taking place across the summer months. ...Read more
Sparkling white beaches, deep blue seas, sugar-cube villages and venerable ancient sites make the
Greek islands an idyllic holiday destination for many. Tourists can immerse in the Greek cuisine,
century-old sites and local culture each island has to offer, while enjoy luxurious accommodation
and the locals’ warm and welcoming hospitality. ...Read more
2019’s summer fashion trends provide plenty of great options for retirees. Here, McCarthy & Stone provide a rundown of the very best. ...Read more
Looking for an exhilarating and challenging activity that brings a sense of serenity and calmness? We think we’ve found the perfect catch. ...Read more
A McCarthy & Stone Retirement Living Plus apartment is about getting more from life for the over 70s. It’s the perfect combination really - company when you want it, help when you could use it, care when you need it. And all in the comfort of your own stylish new home. ...Read more
Retirement Living PLUS is all about making life easier. This includes providing a great value in-house restaurant or bistro, where you can enjoy freshly prepared food in good company. ...Read more
Although warmer weather can be a welcome sight for many, the increased temperatures can lead to
added risks for some, particularly those with health issues or those that are more vulnerable. Stay well with these tips. ...Read more
We want to create retirement communities that enrich the quality of life for our customers and their families, and look to respond better to our customers’ evolving needs. ...Read more
Once the hotbed of smuggling, Worthing today is a quirky seaside town. ...Read more
You don’t need an outdoor garden to have a green thumb! We speak to journalist and gardening expert, Jane Perrone, about the best plants for an indoor garden, providing useful tips for you to use in your retirement property. ...Read more
Graham Oakley's intricate, detailed drawings of fictional characters over the years have captivated families, becoming bedtime story favourites. ...Read more
There are many benefits of downsizing and if this is something you are considering, here, we share our knowledge about downsizing, and explain why it could be one of the best things you can do for your retirement. ...Read more
Our research shows that one in three over 55s in Britain are looking to downsize their home. Here we explore our findings. ...Read more
The world-famous RHS Chelsea Flower Show. It’s the most glamorous day out in the gardening calendar.
The grounds of the Royal Hospital Chelsea are once again blooming with flora as the Royal Horticultural Society prepares to welcome 157,000 spectators to their annual five-day flower festival in May. ...Read more
After her husband passed away in 2014, Sylvie Morgan decided to move from her home in Malmesbury to Paxton Court, Tenby, where she is enjoying an active social life, and has met many new friends! ...Read more
With summer just around the corner, why not start to plan some trips away to explore some of the
UK’s hidden gems? ...Read more
Last summer, we honoured eight inspirational over-60s whose impressive feats were changing the lives of the people around them. Our North London Inspirational Generation winner, Jean Hoare, was invited to an exclusive event thanks to her work. ...Read more
McCarthy & Stone have introduced a new range of rental and buying choices that can make retirement living even more accessible. ...Read more
Bettys Cookery School tutor Jenny Culver shares her favourite food moments and tells us why Bettys is still one of the UK's favourite places for afternoon tea, 100 years on. ...Read more
McCarthy & Stone has officially launched its charity partnership with Beanstalk, a national children’s literacy foundation. ...Read more
McCarthy & Stone have carried out a survey to determine the UK’s top 10 favourite pieces of ‘mums’ advice’. Read on to find out more. ...Read more
If you’re looking to book a holiday and need some inspiration, then take a look at our selection of some of the best UNESCO World Heritages Sites to help you plan what could be the trip of a lifetime. ...Read more
More and more people are choosing to put off their retirement and continue working. Plus, in many other cases, those who have already retired are looking to return to work. Here, we weigh up the pros and cons of each situation. ...Read more
eharmony’s relationship expert, Rachael Lloyd explains why online dating can be a great choice for anyone over 60. ...Read more
We understand the problem of loneliness amongst older people and we want to do something to combat it. That’s why we have created our latest Pen Pals programme, an outlet to connect older people with other older people in communities by the writing and exchanging of letters. Click to find out more. ...Read more
Friendship is hugely important at every stage in life, and retirement is no exception. What’s more, in retirement you could make the most of the extra free time you have to discover different experiences and meet new people – leading to new friendships and relationships. ...Read more
Earlier in 2018, Rightmove surveyed 21,000 people in a bid to find the happiest locations to live in the country. We take a look at the results. ...Read more
Rather than being a time to slow down, retirement can be a chance to try new experiences and become the best version of yourself. ...Read more
Looking back to Christmas memories from the 50s and 60s is a wonderful way to celebrate colourful childhoods and festive moments from a different era. ...Read more
Why should retirement stop you from trying a new passion? Angie and Edson Chace, prove that age is just a number with their newfound acting success. ...Read more
Famed for its industry and innovation, the green, modern cityscape now replaces the smoking chimneys from the industrial revolution. There’s a friendly, independent and alternative spirit that can be hard to find in other cities alongside a thriving cultural scene. ...Read more
Following the appointment of John Tonkiss, as McCarthy & Stone’s new Chief Executive Officer in September, we speak to him about his vision for the future.
Popular North Gate Court customer Wally Blazey moved into their McCarthy & Stone apartment with his wife Gladys seven months ago, and the couple have just celebrated their 72nd anniversary. At 92, Wally is one of the two last surviving drivers of the Flying Scotsman, the most famous steam locomotive in the world. ...Read more
We count down the UK’s favourite Christmas displays as voted by the public. ...Read more
2018 marks 100 years since the end of conflict – a year to remember the bravery of those who fought, lived and died in the First World War. ...Read more
The passing of a life-long partner is, of course, devastating and changes your life irrevocably. Regardless of how near they lived to you, or how resilient your character, a feeling of loneliness is inevitable following your loss. ...Read more
With darker days and cooler weather heading our way, there are plenty of interesting and exciting things you can do with your grandchildren this winter. ...Read more
Thinking of making the move to our lavish Asbhrae development? Discover a wealth of things to see and do in the local area. ...Read more
Plant containers are a space-saving option for the garden that's easier than working the soil. Leigh Hunt, Horticultural Advisor for the RHS tells us all that's needed to know about upcycling them. ...Read more
Marie Bird, who is 91 and a homeowner at Bilberry Place, Bromsgrove, Worcestershire, tells us how moving to a Retirement Living PLUS development has helped her achieve her ambition of living the retirement she always wanted....Read more
Stylish apartments, exclusively for retirees who are looking to enhance their lifestyle, are McCarthy & Stone’s trademark. Here’s what to expect from our property types on offer....Read more
September 23rd marks the first day of autumn with cooler days, darker nights and annual harvests ahead. But how can you prepare for the season? ...Read more
As summer fades, England’s largest history and culture festival is back. This September, hundreds of historic monuments and buildings throughout England – including many usually closed to the public – will throw open their doors for free. ...Read more
Discover Inspirational Generation winner and former Olympian, Marjorie Carter’s inspiring story, with a sports career that spanned over 70 years and a refusal to ever give up gymnastics! ...Read more
Whether you're a pet owner or have a pet free home, animals of all kinds have been proven to improve the happiness of their human counterparts. To find out more McCarthy & Stone conducted a survey to see how pets enrich their owners lives. Here are the results! ...Read more
McCarthy & Stone spoke to Psychologist, Psychotherapist, Writer and Broadcaster Corinne Sweet about the psychological benefits of owning pets. ...Read more
Summer has arrived and Wimbledon is right around the corner, so for all the tennis enthusiasts, we've got 5 surprising facts to get you right in the mood! ...Read more
Here we put the spotlight on two retirees whose hobbies have taken them on trips all over the world. ...Read more
Discover coastal properties for sale all around the UK and Ireland with McCarthy & Stone’s unique locations and luxury developments. ...Read more