Charity in court building bid
by Hayley Robinson
A charity has submitted a bid to buy the former town
FACES of Kent, which offers support services to carers of all
ages, says it needs to find a bigger, permanent and more central
location due to the growing number of people it helps.
It currently rents offices in Sheerness, where it has been based
for the last three and a half years.
A mortgage has already been agreed in principal so the charity
can buy the premises in Park Road, Sittingbourne.
If its offer is accepted, it plans to transform the building –
providing training and function rooms, plus conference and office
facilities which will be available to other organisations to
There will be a young carers’ zone where parents can drop their
youngsters off while they shop in the high street without any
There will also be a cafe open to the public plus a sensory
room, wet room and shower facilities.
In addition there will be 1:1 counselling rooms, therapy and
relaxation rooms, wi-fi computer suite, a quiet room, sensory
garden and a bedsit to support young carers.
Grants will be used to carry out the refurbishment works, which
are estimated to cost in the region of £600,000. It will be done in
It’s hoped the community cafe, hire-out rooms and car parking
will provide a regular income to keep the centre running.
Chief executive Sandie Hornby said: “It’s something we’ve always
spoken about but it’s only now we feel we’re in a position to go
ahead and do it.
“We’ve looked at other buildings in Sittingbourne but they were
“A design agent which sponsors us has had an architect draw up
some plans for us free of charge.
“We’re hopeful and very excited but we have said if we don’t get
the court we will move somewhere else because at the moment our
offices are up two flights of stairs and there is no disabled
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