A COUPLE hope they will get the greenlight from planners to build the first ever care home in Haltwhistle.

Terry Christie, a Haltwhistle Town Councillor and landscaping business owner with his partner Rachel Hardy, a qualified nurse, are hoping to get the seal of approval from the Northumberland County Council in January, when they put forward plans to turn an abandoned church hall building into a care home.

The plans centre around the former Haltwhistle Church Hall in Haltwhistle's Main Street.

Terry and Rachel said Haltwhistle residents have told them a care home in the town is 'very much needed'.

Terry said: “In 2019 we talked to the residents of Haltwhistle at the Remembrance parade about the lack of local care homes in the area, forcing many friends and family to be separated if someone needed care services.

“It is something close to our hearts, Rachel started her career as a care assistant in the last care home we had - which was called Greenholme and was closed.

“All the residents had to be moved to a different homes miles away from the town and everything they knew.

He also adds: “Rachel and I are passionate about our older generation; we are here because of them and the deserve to be stay in their local communities if the time does come that they need 24-hour care that can be no longer provided in their own home.”

The proposed care home is to be called Tyne Valley View Care Home and will have a potential to offer 20 residential beds, five dementia beds and five nursing beds. It will also create a mass of jobs for local residents.

Additionally, the couple plan to add more services to the care home such as a house calls, meals on wheels and bi-weekly day out bus trips, with a driver, to tourist attractions like Seahouses and Beamish.

Other plans also include a ‘drop in centre’ for the ageing population to have laundry done, a hot meal and a chat.

Rachel adds: “We have much support from the local community, so now the challenge is to secure the relevant planning approval.