‘Going Dutch’ £8.5m Hawick care village plan under the spotlight

The people of Hawick are being asked to have their say on a revolutionary ‘going Dutch’ £8.5m care village plan for the town.

The site of the proposed care facility in Guthrie Drive, Hawick. Photo: Bill McBurnie.
The site of the proposed care facility in Guthrie Drive, Hawick. Photo: Bill McBurnie.

Scottish Borders Council agreed in March to push ahead with a new facility on land south-east of Guthrie Drive at Stirches, a move which would lead to the eventual closure of the town’s Deanfield care home.

The ‘care village’ would be based on a model pioneered in the Netherlands by providing specialist dementia care in a homely setting.

The plans first surfaced in 2020 after council representatives paid a fact-finding visit to the Hogeweyk dementia village in northern Holland, to look at a new way of delivering care.

The care village concept is a move away from institutionalised care to create a ‘neighbourhood that is part of a broader society’.

The Hawick complex forms part of a two-pronged £22.5m new approach to elderly care in the region, with a £14m 60-bed ‘care village’ also earmarked for the Lowood Estate at Tweedbank.

Now to gauge the public’s views on the Hawick proposal, a series of online and drop-in sessions are being lined up.

The aim is to capture the views and ideas of local residents and other stakeholders to help develop an outline business case due to be presented to the council and Integration Joint Board in August or September.

Councillor Tom Weatherston, the council’s executive member for social work and community enhancement, said: “To ensure we continue to provide high quality care for our older residents and keep us up with the anticipated increase in demand for health and social care services, we have committed to delivering two new care villages in the Borders over the next four years, including one for Hawick.

“To help with our plans, we want to engage with the local Teviot and Liddesdale community, those with lived experience and other stakeholders to get their views and ideas about what they think is needed and would work well in the area. I would encourage everyone with an interest to make sure they join us, either in person or at one of our online sessions.”

Booking is required for the online workshops but not the drop-in sessions.

The drop-ins take place on Thursday, July 14, 10am to noon, at the Heart of Hawick Community Cafe and on Tuesday, July 19, at the same venue and at the same time.

Online workshops are to be staged on Thursday, July 14, from 4pm to 6pm and Monday, July 25, at the same time.

To book a place, email: [email protected]