Housing (health and wellbeing needs in South Tyneside)


During the development of the borough-wide integrated housing strategy in 2014 the council undertook some public consultation. Although these results are not statistically valid they do give an indication of views on older person housing and supported and specialist accommodation.

Table 5

Have you considered alternative housing when you get older?

31 (56.4%)


24 (43.6%)


Table 6

Which alternative housing types would you feel are desirable for older people? 

(Please tick all that apply)

9 (17.3%)

Sheltered housing bedsits

35 (67.3%)

Sheltered housing apartments

25 (48.1%)

Older person apartment block

49 (94.2%)


20 (38.5%)

Extra care flats

18 (34.6%)

Nursing homes / Residential care

31 (59.6%)

Adapted houses

Table 7

Which of the following do you think would make alternative housing more attractive for older people? (Please tick all that apply)

36 (69.2%)

On-site warden

38 (73.1%)

Emergency cords and assistive call systems

28 (53.8%)

Assistive technology to identify any problems in the property

38 (73.1%)

Social or community activities

27 (51.9%)

Befriending scheme

Table 8


How do you rate the quality of current older persons housing within South Tyneside?


1 (1.9%)



7 (13.5%)

Very good


27 (51.9%)



15 (28.8%)



2 (3.8%)

Very Poor


Do you feel there is the need for any additional supported accommodation within South Tyneside?

42 (80.8%)


10 (19.2%)


If yes, which of the following vulnerable groups should be supported? 

(Please tick all that apply)

34 (85.0%)

People with a learning disability

32 (80.0%)

People with mental health problems

37 (92.5%)

Older people

13 (32.5%)


28 (70.0%)

People with a physical or sensory impairment

7 (17.5%)

Mobile communities

28 (70.0%)

Young people at risk

30 (75.0%)


31 (77.5%)

Victims of domestic abuse

15 (37.5%)

People suffering with AIDS or HIV

7 (17.5%)

Pregnant teenagers

10 (25.0%)

Substance mis-users

9 (22.5%)

Asylum seekers and refugees

We also undertook some focus group work with older people and these are the issues that they raised for housing in the borough. There was a mixture of council tenants, tenants renting from RPs, private tenants and owner-occupiers. These are the main issues raised within the focus groups:

  • Security of tenure was very important, it was felt that when living in private rented or on a short-term tenancy this can cause high levels of stress and property does not feel like their 'home'
  • There was also mention of secure for younger families that may lose their jobs and be unable to meet their housing costs due to changes in the benefit system
  • Improving accessibility of areas could improve desirability of different property types - i.e. a shuttle bus around sheltered/older persons housing areas
  • There needs to be amenities close by, including shops, doctors - within walking distance or accessible for bus service
  • Issues with lack of car parking facilities
  • Design of some older persons housing needs to be looked at as a number of properties are very small or built a long time ago. Suggestion of knocking two bungalows or flats into one for better quality accommodation
  • Discussion around the mismatch between supply and demand, for example high demand for two bedroom bungalows and very few available
  • Remodelling of sheltered schemes, the current dated format is more like a hotel reducing the feeling of independence
  • There was a suggestion that older people find social renting desirable as they don't want the responsibility and stress for doing own repairs and there is a security of tenure
  • Hard for people to downsize if they want to (discussed in terms of understanding allocations policy and none IT access to bid)
  • Also difficult to downsize as there is a lack of suitable sized properties
  • Needs to be mixed communities and not just older person housing and the area get stigmatised
  • Some older properties have issues with maintenance and cost of heating etc.
  • Was some appreciation (from some) that bungalows are limited and will stay that way
  • Felt some property types i.e. large maisonettes were unsuitable for older people
  • Lack of knowledge of help and advice out there relating to housing - pamphlet detailing housing options, adaptations, maintenance etc.
  • Take the development hit on some sites where older persons housing would be ideal
  • People want to remain in their own home, how can this be achieved
  • Issue with properties in conservation areas, not allowed to make any changes to the external therefore if required ramp or wider doors would need to move
  • There needs to be the development of terraced bungalows
  • No need for large gardens for older people but could offer a handyman service
  • There is an issue with stock lost to Right To Buy and an issue in Buy To Let being an issue in private rented accommodation