Leeds homeless charity unveils pioneering new flats development in city

A pioneering new development of flats designed for some of most vulnerable people in Leeds has been officially opened.

Thursday, 5th August 2021, 4:45 am
Pictured at the opening of Don Robins'House in Hedley Chase, Leeds are Rachel Reeves MP Leeds West, James Lewis, Leader of Leeds City Council , on the right is Martin Patterson New Projects and Devolopment St George's Crypt. Photo: Steve Riding

Leeds homelessness charity St George's Crypt has completed a project to build 24 supported living flats in Hedley Chase, New Wortley.

St George's Crypt has called the new development Don Robins' House, after the priest who founded the charity in 1930.

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Pictured at the opening of Don Robins' House in Hedley Chase, Leeds are James Lewis, Leader of Leeds City Council who officially opened the house with Rachel Reeves MP Leeds West, in the centre is Martin Patterson New Projects and Development St George's Crypt. Photo: Steve Riding

Don Robins transformed the crypt beneath St George’s Church in Leeds city centre to create a kitchen and shelter for those in need.

Don Robins' House was officially opened today (Aug 4) by Coun James Lewis, leader of Leeds City Council and Leeds West MP Rachel Reeves.

Coun Lewis, said: "The council is delighted to support the incredible work of St George’s Crypt and it’s great to see Don Robins' House is now ready to provide vital services and support to some of our city’s most vulnerable people."

"We are fully committed to working with a range of partners throughout Leeds to provide support to those who are rough sleeping or homeless.

"Leeds is fortunate to have key charities such as St George’s Crypt that have continued to do an incredible job throughout the last 16 months of the pandemic."

Leeds pub facing calls from police for licence to be revoked - 10 things you saidMs Reeves said: "Organisations like St George’s Crypt provide fantastic support to help those who are struggling to rebuild their lives, and I wish all future residents the very best with their recovery."

Chris Fields, chief executive officer of St George’s Crypt, said, ‘This is, hopefully, our first step towards securing vulnerably housed people in Leeds; a bespoke, state-of-the-art project with 24-hour onsite support, links into all the services we and our partners provide.

"We aim for this to be a solid foundation from which our residents can develop the skills necessary to move on positively with their lives, and to move past the barriers that they may have encountered in the past."

Designed by Leeds-based Brewster Bye Architects, it has been developed in partnership with Leeds City Council.

Sixteen and seventeen-year-olds to be offered first coronavirus vaccineWith close ties to the New Wortley Community Centre and other local support networks, the aim is to provide tenants with a solid foundation.

The new development will work alongside St George’s Crypt’s drug and alcohol residential rehabilitation service, alcohol dependency service and emergency accommodation service to provide additional housing support for those in need.

A third of the build cost came from Leeds City Council’s Right to Buy Replacement Fund and almost third has been fundraised thanks to supporters of the long serving work of St George’s Crypt.

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