Young carollers from a County Durham school were hitting the festive high notes last week.
The pupils from Cestria Primary School in Chester-le-Street, staged a carol concert at the town’s £6.5m Extra Care scheme, The Elms, built by Cestria Community Housing, part of the Isos Group.
The children performed for an invited audience of residents, staff and members of the local community, including Durham county councillor Katherine Henig.
The school has forged close links with The Elms’ residents this year during a unique art project to create a series of glass “postcards from the past” which are now on display in the building.
Isos Community Development officer, Lewis Rimington, said: “It was a wonderful concert; the children had been really looking forward to performing for their friends at The Elms, which just shows the sort of impression the art project has had on them.”
The Elms, featuring 52 apartments and six bungalows for rent, shared ownership and outright sale, was designed to enable older people to retain their independence in their own, self-contained apartments, while benefiting from all the care and support they might require as their health needs change.
It also offers its residents the chance to be part of a real community, with an on-site café and facilities – including a community allotment, community exhibition space, hairdressing salon and IT suite – which have made it a hub for local people.
The Elms was designed by JDDK architects, with project management from Identity Consult. It was built by community regeneration and construction specialist, Keepmoat.