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Would living in a retirement community suit you?

We asked Fiona Wookey from Holy Cross Priory, near Heathfield, East Sussex to give us the low-down.

Why do people choose to move?

The majority want to ensure that they enjoy making their own decision about their future home – and it isn’t left to a relative due to a crisis. Many people were concerned about the practical demands and costs of maintaining a big house and garden. Plus, their current homes are not designed for potential future care needs and, if they were widowed, life would be very lonely.

How is it an investment? What type of accommodation is on offer?

You are still purchasing a home, so you are investing in bricks and mortar. You can find some rented retirement flats, but at Holy Cross Priory you would own your apartment. We have 20 stunning 1- and 2-bedroom apartments in a Grade-ll listed Priory building and 20 new build 1- and 2-bedroom apartments. There is also a separate care home within the grounds.

The apartments combine stylish features with subtle, practical elements that enable it to suit any needs in the future. For example, the apartments include wet rooms and wider doorways, alongside period features and luxury fittings. There is also some housekeeping support included in the purchase price and the option of an in-home personal care service, if you should ever need it.

What makes your community different?

Unlike so many other large, shareholder-owned retirement villages, Holy Cross is totally independent and run by the people who work there, for the benefit of the residents and the community. Owners of Holy Cross Priory apartments are able to get involved in shaping how things are run in the retirement community if they wish.

Tell us about facilities that are on offer?

There is a restaurant, library, small shop, hair salon, croquet and bowls lawns, clubs, allotments, chapel, function room and guest suite for visitors. There is also assistance with transport to the local towns and villages, so you get the best of both worlds – access to local amenities with a private and very peaceful rural setting.

How is it a sociable experience?

You will have neighbours of a similar age and be able to socialise in a number of ways.  At Holy Cross Priory, you can always set up new social clubs and activities too. It is so important for your health and wellbeing to not be isolated as you get older. A retirement community enables you to live as privately as you wish, but have the companionship of other retirees, domestic and care staff within easy reach.


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