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Thumbs up for new Family Welcome Centre for Havering's vulnerable families\

Planning consent given for high-quality, emergency accommodation offering 74 dwellings in a variety of sizes, with the largest size accommodating up to eight family members.

The Family Welcome Centre will form the first phase of the Harold Hill Town Centre Regeneration Masterplan. Havering’s vision for the regeneration of Harold Hill Town Centre received Cabinet approval in spring 2021, which includes the redevelopment of the Farnham & Hilldene Estate, Chippenham Road and the current Abercrombie House hostel.

Designed as a U-shaped building, a landscaped central courtyard sits at the heart of the centre, creating an attractive and secure space for families – including a play area for children. It was important that their health and wellbeing were considered first and foremost through a visual link to nature, access to generous amenity spaces as well as a healthcare provision within the building

A Health Centre on the ground and first floors, positioned along Hilldene Avenue, also delivers accessible health services to the wider local community.

“Our new Family Welcome Centre will be the first of its kind in Havering...it will help us to expand our support for Havering’s most vulnerable, as set out in our homelessness and rough sleeping strategy.”

Councillor Joshua Chapman Cabinet Lead for Housing

The new Family Welcome Centre will replace the borough’s existing hostels. This will include Will Perrin Court, which will close as soon as the new Family Welcome Centre is completed. A working group will be created with local residents from South Hornchurch to agree on options for the future use of the Will Perrin site.

“The proposed Family Welcome Centre will help provide a welcoming and uplifting environment for families who are going through a potentially distressing period in their lives.

We hope that it will set a new standard for this type of accommodation across the UK.”

Nick Gaskell Partner and Workplace Sector Lead at Hawkins\Brown

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