Your elderly relative may wish to continue to live independently in old age, but become unable to live in their own home. Across Berkshire, there are a few options to facilitate this, each with their own advantages, depending on individual circumstances.
In terms of making the current living environment safer, rather than relocating, you may be interested in our Safer Independent Living in Berkshire guide.
This guide looks at possibilities in the county so that you can help your elderly relative make the right decisions about their future.
Downsizing in Berkshire
Downsizing means moving into a smaller property. This move often frees up capital for potential future care costs. It is a common step for the elderly to make before moving into a care home. Situations that often trigger this move include a partner passing away or a larger house becoming too strenuous to maintain.
For more information on issues surrounding downsizing, you may be interested in 6 Practical tips for helping elderly parents downsize.
When helping an elderly relative downsize in Berkshire, the following factors are important to take into consideration:
Public Transport Routes
Your elderly relative may be getting too old to safely drive, or perhaps downsizing means they no longer have space to park a car. If so, access to public transport routes is vital so that they can get out and about.
Towns and villages across Berkshire are generally well connected by local railway and bus services. Whilst the major towns (Bracknell, Maidenhead, Reading and Slough) have frequent railway services, smaller towns and villages are served by an adequate bus and rail network.
To check for connections in a particular town or village, please take a look at the following public transport maps:
To plan a journey in Berkshire, Traveline is a really good resource. You are able to enter two locations to be given a suggested route, along with how long the journey will take.
Proximity to High Street
If your elderly relative no longer drives or lives alone, being close to local amenities and community hubs is really important. Being able to shop, socialise and collect prescriptions without help can increase well being and feelings of independence.
Property prices close to high streets and town/village centres do tend to be a little more expensive, however, in the long term close proximity to a high street can mean that your elderly relative can live independently, as well as saving on travel costs.
Sheltered Housing in Berkshire
Sheltered Housing is accommodation for people aged 60 or over. It provides independent living within a secure environment where there is extra support if needed and regular social activities.
Some sheltered housing is run by local council housing authorities, so it is subsidised and affordable. This route is generally suggested after a care needs assessment. The outcome of a financial assessment will decide how much of the cost you pay towards provision.
To discuss options available in your elderly relative’s area, please find contact details for council housing departments below.
- Telephone: 0118 937 2217
- Telephone: 01753 475111
- Telephone: 01628 683221
Silva Homes are an independent, not for profit, South East based organisation who assist in arranging sheltered housing on behalf of Bracknell Forest, West Berkshire and Wokingham councils.
Berkshire Retirement Homes
Retirement homes are similar to sheltered housing in that some facilities are on site and there is a warden on hand to help. However, retirement homes are more communal in living space. Instead of separate houses and bungalows, retirement homes are typically made up of rented rooms or apartments.
There are over 200 retirement homes in Berkshire to choose from. You can search here on Housing Care and filter by area to find one that suits your needs.
Retirement homes are different to care homes and nursing homes, as they do not provide immediate or medical care to residents.
If your elderly relative requires more care, then it may be best to look at care homes instead. Please take a look at our finding a care home in Berkshire page.
Berkshire Retirement Villages
Retirement villages are large developments of different housing types, exclusively for older people. They are typically located in beautiful countryside and offer a variety of leisure facilities including club houses, swimming pools, restaurants and spas.
Retirement villages tend to be the most expensive, independent living option for later life, but include a great quality of life and often have care available from an onsite team. In Berkshire, there are several options that your elderly relative may wish to consider.
Audley Inglewood Hungerford
Nestled in 39 acres, near Kintbury; Audley Inglewood is a luxury retirement village and home to 91 apartments and cottages. At its centre lies Inglewood House; a former manor house that has been restored. Audley Inglewood has its own health club, library and restaurant. Extra care can be provided to residents that need more support with living.
- Address: Audley Inglewood, Templeton Road, Kintbury, Hungerford, RG17 9AA
- Telephone: 01488 208008
- Visit Website
Bridge House of Twyford
Bridge House of Twyford is a retirement village located within walking distance of Twyford, on the banks of the River Loddon. Established for more than 35 years, Bridge House has an excellent reputation for care and hospitality in later life. Homes are generously spaced and the surrounding landscaped gardens and countryside make for a relaxing setting.
Facilities include a restaurant, spa, swimming pool and hairdressers. Hospitality and domestic services are available 24 hours a day and extra care can be provided for assisted living.
- Address: Bridge House of Twyford, 64 High Street, Twyford, RG10 9AQ
- Telephone: 0800 230 0206
- Visit Website
Lynford Village, Ascot
Apartments, cottages and duplexes are all available to live in at Lynwood Village in Ascot. There is a vibrant and friendly community where it is easy to find support and things to do. A spa, hair salon, shop, arts and crafts room and library are all on site with a schedule of regular clubs and activities. Days out are frequently organised with private minibus transport. Optional and flexible care is available from the onsite Care and Support team.