Visit to the MacIntyre Centre

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9am Monday morning finds me meeting Hilary, Joyce & Peter for a meeting with the Operations Manager for the MacIntyre Centre in Great Holm.

MacIntyre is a charity that has been delivering services to people with learning disabilities in Milton Keynes since 1988.

MacIntyre’s Head Office is in Central Milton Keynes, and the organisation employs around 250 staff locally. They support over 150 people with learning disabilities in the city, and this number is growing.

Their site at Great Holm is their main base in Milton Keynes, as it includes accommodation for 40 people, a centre offering educational and therapeutic activities and a coffee shop.

Over 100 people with a learning disability attend the Great Holm center every week, but the building is in need of updating to make it more accessible and provide some more space and better facilities. This will allow MacIntyre to continue offering a diverse range of activities, from literacy and numeracy to horticulture and music. They also want to open the building up to the community more, so that people can use their facilities and share their activities.

In the future they want to get out and about more in the community themselves.

To find out more about MacIntyre and get a flavour of what they do, why not visitwww.macintyremiltonkeynes.org or drop in for lunch to one of their coffee shops or bakeries

Great Holm Coffee Shop and Bakery, 54 Haddon, Great Holm, MK8 9HP
Tel: 01908 265943
Opening Hours: Monday to Friday 9-3

This iconic building was built in the 1980s. It adjoins the MacIntyre Housing Association properties and enables the Centre to support those residents living in the community.

Next week, MacIntyre are holding public consultation events on their plans to modernise, improve and expand their operations. The hope to apply for planning permission in April 2012 and intend to close the centre for about a year from October 2012 to enable their redevelopment and expansion of facilities.

We viewed the plans and the site for the development. The need for the redevelopment is very apparent. 30 years on from opening, parts of the building need to be modernized. The controversial part of the plans relates to the size and location of the new development. Our group had concerns that the size of the building and its location at the entrance to Great Holm is unwelcome.

We encourage others to attend the public consultation meetings next week and to feed back comments on the proposals before they are finalized and lodged for planning permission. We would also welcome comments form parishioners on what they think of these proposals as we consider our response to the planning application.

We certainly had an interesting tour and it was lovely to see so many residents taking part in activities in such a happy and supportive environment. MacIntyre do excellent work and deserve recognition for it.

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