In 2014 Public Health England welcomed expressions of interest from substance use services in funding capital grant projects on the theme of recovery. Backed by Leeds Public Health and Adult Social Care at Leeds City Council, St Anne’s were successful in their bid of redeveloping Ashton House as an extension of the existing rehab facility at St Mark’s House. For those who have been around long enough, the ground floor of Ashton House used to be the old detox, where police and ambulances would drop off intoxicated people for a period of sobering-up or detoxification.
Now completely transformed after a 5 month building project, Ashton House is now home to 4 clients in a facility that provides a little more independence from the other part of rehab, and allows for enhanced preparation before leaving rehab. With the new facilities we now have the opportunity to allow our clients to practice more of the coping skills that they have learnt in rehab. Project Managed by Robert Pitt, the building work went relatively smoothly and ahead of schedule.
The official opening of the service allowed us to express our thanks to all who have made the project possible and to tell people more about the work done in the detoxification and rehabilitation services. In addition to the extra rehabilitation facilities, the service is also able to report that Leeds Public Health has supported St Anne’s in having an additional detoxification bed, taking the total number of detox beds to 5 and rehab beds to 18.
Current clients, volunteers and staff showed the visitors around the service, which included the ribbon-cutting by Cllr Mulherin, Chair of Leeds City Council Health &Wellbeing Strategy Board and Dr Ian Cameron, Director of Public Health in Leeds. Over 70 people from a variety of different services attended the event, finding out more about detox and rehab, as well as sampling some freshly baked cakes made by clients and staff.
Thanks go to Robert Pitt and all the Head Office staff who made the project possible; to Public Health and Adult Social Care at Leeds City Council who supported the project; to Public Health England for providing the capital funding; to the clients who participated in the day; and lastly, to all the wonderful staff and volunteers who work so hard and with so much care and dedication to make it a fantastic project.