Bathurst Street site of Ourcare Services and Senior Citizens - future options being considered

Site being considered for a change of title which may enable the land to be sold.
Site being considered for a change of title which may enable the land to be sold.

Ourcare Services looks to expand with the potential purchase of Bathurst Street location and adjoining Senior Citizens Centre.

A gateway determination to reclassify the Bathurst Street site is expected in the coming months, to allow options for the future of the land including the buildings occupied by Ourcare Services and the Senior Citizens Centre.

Singleton Council is in conversations with Ourcare Services and the Senior Citizens Centre Welfare Association about options for the management of the site, including the potential sale, after Council resolved to pursue the reclassification in November last year as a result of representations from Ourcare Services.

Both buildings are located on a single land title and individually leased to the Senior Citizens Centre until January 2020, and the Ourcare Services building until 30 June 2022.

Anthony Egan, Council's Director Business and Community Services, said community consultation was a key part of the reclassification process.

"The site is classified as community land under the Local Government Act 1993, and in order to make changes to the management of the land - including the potential for sale - requires the land to be operational," he said.

"The consultation will include a public hearing where members of the community will be encouraged to raise their views about the future of the site.

"Council is in conversations with Ourcare Services about the potential for sale, as well as the Senior Citizens Centre Welfare Association.

"Our priority is to ensure Ourcare Services can continue to grow to deliver important services to our community, as well as ensuring the Senior Citizens Centre Welfare Association continues to be an active part of our community."

Ourcare Services Ltd is a local, community-owned organisation that has been providing community services in Singleton and surrounding LGA communities for the past 40 years. In that time, the organisation has continually grown and adapted to meet the needs not only individuals, but also families and the community.

Ourcare Services Board of Directors chairperson David Walker said while it was early days, there were synergies between Ourcare and the Senior Citizens Association with expectations the result could be a state-of-the-art venue offering a place of friendship and meaningful activity primary for people over 55 years of age.

"Ourcare's focus is on bringing vitality to the lives of older members of our town, bringing meaningful activities, independence and a bit of excitement to their day and the space that the Senior Citizens Centre offers will open so many new social opportunities," he said.

"We have immediate capacity to provide supported transport and other social activities to the venue.

"We have connected with the executive group of the Senior Citizens, working on strategies for continued future activity improvement and growth. We have the experience and ability to deliver a variety of meaningful activities, provide a safe place to meet, chat, enjoy a cup of tea or coffee with cakes or biscuits and encourage all to choose and participate in appropriate activities.

"If all goes to plan, it will be a mix of a little bit relaxation, a little bit exhilaration, a little bit of excitement, and a whole lot of fun."

President of Singleton Senior Citizens Colleen McMahon said she saw the opportunity to work with Ourcare as a saviour for the Seniors Centre.

"We've been unable to fill executive roles, which poses a huge problem to the overall operation of the Centre. What Council and Ourcare are offering will be our saving grace, and we are looking forward to working with them," she said.