Homeowners and businesses came together to enjoy a party to celebrate the launch of the new Sherborne Platinum Skies community.
As one of the first official engagements of her mayoral year, Cllr Juliet Pentolfe, Mayor of Sherborne, cut the ribbon on the independent-living apartments in Mulberry House and neighbouring houses which are home to people aged 55 and over.
The Mayor, accompanied by Mark Edwards, co-managing director of Platinum Skies, and relationship manager Sara Rowan then took a tour of the communal facilities including a bistro and bar, activity room, treatment room and homeowners’ lounge.
She also saw some of the homes available for purchase, which include one-, two- and three-bedroom apartments, and two- and three-bedroom detached, semi-detached and terraced houses.
All have access to the shared communal spaces.
Speaking after the event, Cllr Pentolfe, said: “I love the Sherborne Platinum Skies community. I think it’s absolutely fantastic.
“It’s a brilliant concept and it has a wonderful community feeling.
“I’ve been to look around the apartments and the houses, and as soon as you walk through the door, it feels as though you’re on holiday.
Homes are available to buy in the Sherborne community from £130,000 with the Platinum Skies shared ownership option.
Sherborne has two dedicated community managers, Hayley and Vanessa.
They organise fun activities to enable homeowners to socialise, which can include wine-tasting workshops, talks, live music, yoga, coffee mornings, quizzes and crafts, as well as providing practical and emotional support.
Among the party’s guests were Pamela and Derek Emerson, who moved into a house in Canon Woods Close earlier this year.
Derek said: “It’s one of the best new-build houses we have seen.
“From my point of view, I think it’s one of the best moves we’ve ever made – and that’s coming from someone who really didn’t want to move out of their last house.”
Pamela added: “We came from Devon and lived on Dartmoor in a large house with no neighbours.
“It meant we were isolated, although I was happy to spend all day in the garden.
“Thinking about coming into a retirement village was initially quite daunting, but as Derek says, we settled in quite quickly and the community managers go to a lot of effort for us, along with Agata, who runs the bistro.”
By Andrew Diprose