Penzance Extra Care

  • Location Penzance, Cornwall
  • Client Cornwallis Care Services
  • Year 2019-Present

A flagship extra-care development for Cornwall comprising of 58 one and two-bed apartments set within the wider Polwithen House masterplan. The development enables residents to live independently in their own-self contained homes whilst benefitting from access to on-site care to suit their varying needs from the adjacent nursing home as and when required.

The apartments are grouped around a sheltered courtyard garden containing raised planters to encourage residents to use the space and stay both physically and mentally active. The close connection between the communal gardens and the apartments also helps to mitigate social isolation. An external shared balcony provides access to the apartments and incorporates informal seating areas to provide further opportunities for spontaneous social interaction. Similar arrangements on other schems have been shown to increase familiarity between neighbours as residents engage in unplanned conversations as they go about their day.

The repeated gable forms draw upon the pitched roofs of Polwithen House to create continuity between old and new, whilst contemporary detailing and materials achieves simple, clean lines and differentiation between the two buildings. A stone plinth at ground floor level provides an element of solidity to the building with charred timber on the upper storeys referencing the woodland setting beyond to create a bold, contemporary aesthetic which is naturally durable against weathering. In contrast, natural timber cladding in a lighter tone is used to emphasise the splayed window reveals on the external facade and wraps around the internal elevations to give a warm and soft appearance. This tonal contrast between the exterior and interior highlights the difference between public and private.

View towards extra care housing from wellness trail
View towards extra care housing from wellness trail
Approaching the entrance to the extra care housing
Landscaped gardens occupy the spaces between buildings
External deck access with views across the shared courtyard gardens

Cornwall has an ageing population and this much needed new development will provide modern, purpose-built accommodation to help those in later life to maintain their independence for longer.

Chris Turner, Project Director
Penzance Extra Care
Lower ground floor and courtyard garden
Upper ground floor and main entrance
First floor plan
Second floor plan
Third floor plan
Proposed east elevation
Proposed internal elevation