CARE home bosses have drawn up plans to develop a new specialist dementia unit.

Stow Healthcare has submitted the plans to Braintree Council.

Proposals would see the Green Lodge building at Halstead Hall, on Mount Hill, renovated and transformed into a dementia care unit.

The centre would be able to care for 37 residents.

The proposals already have a head start with plans for a 25-bed unit at Green Lodge already accepted by Braintree Council.

The care home submitted a controversial plan for 20 homes and the 25-bed unit which was granted in June.

Now Stow Healthcare hopes to boost the number of beds available at the dementia unit to 37.

The company says there is already an appetite to see the care unit built.

The planning application says: “With an ever-ageing population the demand for dementia care continues to rise.

“It is, therefore, common ground that the district urgently needs the provision of specialist care units.

“In that respect support for the recently approved 25-bed scheme at Green Lodge was forthcoming from local residents, officers and district council members.

“This approval followed an appeal decision, but some four years have now elapsed since the original application was submitted in august 2018.

“The passage of time has only led to a more urgent need for facilities of this type to be brought forward for development.”

Stow Heathcare says the Green Lodge building has deteriorated and has suffered extensive damage caused by lead theft from the roof, arson and vandalism.

The firm says it means much of the existing building can not be saved but “the main house and ballroom, despite being in very poor condition are still proposed to be restored and incorporated into the new scheme”.

The new building would be two storeys high according to the proposals, with all bathrooms having ensuite bathrooms and improved room proportions.

The plan also includes a central courtyard on two floors as an enclosed landscaped garden.