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Surrey Choices opens new Community Hub in Redhill

9th July 2021

The new Longmead Hub is located within easy walking distance from local amenities in Redhill town centre and has excellent transport links. This location offers the people, who are supported by Surrey Choices, greater opportunities to become connected within their local community and more options to volunteer, work and socialise close to where they live. The Longmead Hub also has specialist facilities which means it will be able to accommodate those who need extra special support.

This is particularly important as research indicates that people with a learning disability have fewer chances to take part in leisure activities or socialise with their peers, and therefore have less friends and are at risk of social isolation. Surrey Choices’ vision is one of inclusion for people with disabilities.

“We believe that people with disabilities should have the same opportunities as everyone else and in the same places as everyone else” says Jerry Ratcliff, Chief Operating Officer, responsible for the property portfolio within Surrey Choices. “Locating more of our buildings in towns will enable Surrey Choices to develop it’s community-based services to help people better connect with their communities and lead more independent lives.”

Longmead is a modular build and the specification is very high. It contains a fully equipped training kitchen with adjustable countertops, accessible toilets and Changing Places facilities. The state-of-the-art sensory room provides a stimulating setting for those people with profound and multiple learning disabilities.

Speaking at the opening ceremony, the Mayor of Reigate and Banstead, Councillor Jill Bray commented, “It is wonderful to hear how Surrey Choices and the people it supports are already connecting with local residents via the Cromwell community Group and working together to improve the local area. I’m confident that this initiative will benefit everyone involved.”

People who require specialist facilities, such as the sensory room and Changing Places bathroom, will continue to be supported at Longmead as part of their personalised plans. Others will use the hub as a base from which to take advantage of community-based support that better addresses their needs and aspirations.

Sinead Mooney, Surrey County Council’s Cabinet Member for Adults, said: “The official opening of the Longmead hub marks another step forward in how people with disabilities and other needs can be supported to lead more independent and active lives in their communities.”

“Our partnership with Surrey Choices, working with Reigate and Banstead Borough Council, has led to this purpose-built hub which will showcase how people can be given more opportunities to develop their skills and exercise choice and control over their daily lives.”