Charles May House
Charles May House is situated in the centre of Colchester just behind the Mercury Theatre within easy walking distance of shops and buses. The flats are set in communal gardens.
There are ten self contained flats all with their own kitchens and bathrooms. All have emergency alarms. Four flats are at ground level.
Charles May House is ideal for active older people who wish to be in a town with all its amenities. A Scheme Manager answers emergency calls. Residents have a common room with library facilities and guests may be accommodated from time to time.
Applicants must be capable of independent living, be local residents, or have local family connections.
Please send the completed forms to:
The General Manager
The Ogilvie Charities
The Gate House
9 Burkitt Road
Telephone (01394) 388746
Charles May House has been adapted and extended out of the former St Mary’s Cottage, and is set in attractive, communal gardens about a hundred yards distant from the town centre. It is administered by Trustees of the Ogilvie Charities, and is registered with the Charity Commission and the Regulator of Social Housing.
The accommodation at Charles May House comprises of eight purpose-built one-bedroom flats, each of which has its own separate living room, kitchen and bathroom. Four flats are situated at ground-floor level and four are on the first floor: all are suitable for couples or single persons. In addition, there is a two bed roomed first floor apartment and a one bed roomed split level apartment in the original part of the building; both of these have their own kitchens and bathrooms. There is also a lounge with guest room facilities for general use.
Each of the eight flats has an independent, gas-fired, central heating and domestic hot water system. The apartments in the original building, on the other hand, receive their heating and hot water from a communal system which also supplies the common areas and lounge. All have independently metered electricity supplies. Charles May House provides, therefore, self- contained housing accommodation. It is not a Residential Home for older people or a Nursing Home. It offers the security of a Scheme Manager who is responsible for exercising general and unobtrusive supervision of the occupants well-being and sees that they receive any help needed. An audio alarm system linking each of the flats with the Scheme Manager, ensures that assistance can be summoned readily in an emergency. ‘Cover’ for periods when the Scheme Manager is not available is provided by Colchester Borough Council ‘Helpline’ service linked to our system. Relatives and friends are encouraged to help the residents when required, and it is expected that the medical, nursing, and Social Services (such as home help), of the Health Authority and the County Council, will be available to those living at Charles May House, in exactly the same way as to others with homes elsewhere in the local community. Nevertheless, for the good of all, it has to be said that residents cannot remain and be cared for there during illnesses of a kind which would not normally be coped with in their own homes, and in those extreme circumstances, or if they cause undue distress to other residents, they will be required to leave.
Because of the open-plan nature of the ornamental grounds surrounding Charles May House, dogs and cats cannot be kept by residents.
From time to time, the accommodation at Charles May House is advertised publicly and a waiting list of potentially suitable applicants is prepared. It is not necessary for anyone seeking such accommodation to await the appearance of an advertisement, however, because enquiries can be made at any time. Uninvited callers are asked not to visit Charles May House casually, good though their intentions maybe, because they would infringe upon the privacy of the people living there.
Application forms and other information may be downloaded from this website. Alternatively, the General Manager will send enquirers by post, written details of Charles May House and forms of application for the accommodation and services provided there.
On every occasion that a vacancy occurs, the General Manager will select persons on the waiting list and invite them to submit to her up-to-date particulars of their personal circumstances for consideration. She will then arrange personal interview at Charles May House for those whom she considers to be the most needy applicants for the vacant accommodation, and where she considers it appropriate to do so, may ask permission to pay them home visits also. Applicants being interviewed will be given the opportunity to be accompanied by a relative or friend.
The General Manager will refer to the Trustees’ policy on eligibility and other factors, and select from among those interviewed someone whom she can recommend to the Trustees for immediate accommodation at Charles May House. After receiving the Trustees approval a Letter of Agreement will be sent to the applicants selected, setting out the full terms on which the offer of accommodation is authorised and the joint signatures of an applicant and the General Manager will signify their acceptance.
Persons eligible for accommodation at Charles May House are those who, at the absolute discretion of the Trustees, are preferably, but not necessarily, residents of Colchester, or have caring relatives or friends living in the area, and in the Trustees’ judgment are in need of sheltered housing and the oversight of a Scheme Manager.
The current charges are:
- £115.43 for one bed roomed flats
- £177.87 for split level apartment
- £196.00 for two bed roomed apartment
(As at April 2019)
The weekly charge which the Trustees are obliged to make for the accommodation applies to each flat whether occupied by a single person or a couple. It includes the cost of maintaining the premises and equipment in good repair and decoration; the heating of the communal areas, and lighting; the upkeep of the grounds and fences; and the Scheme Manager’s services. This charge will be reviewed regularly by the Trustees and any changes which they consider necessary to make will be explained to the residents at the time. It is payable weekly, in advance, to the General Manager, Ogilvie Charities, The Gate House, 9 Burkitt Road, Woodbridge, Suffolk, IP12 4JJ. The Colchester Borough Council recognises this charge in determining the rate of housing benefit allowance payable to those who are entitled, and close collaboration is maintained with them in such cases.