A CARE HOME and children’s nursery could be built next door to one another under ambitious plans.

Proposals show a three-storey 60-bed care home, alongside a nursery catering for up to 60 children up to the age of five, on land to the west of Haddington’s Gateside Road.

Mansfield Care, which has 11 care homes throughout Scotland’s Central Belt, is confident of getting the green light from East Lothian Council, with the site – bordered by Moncrieff Walk to the west, Aubigny Row and Peregrine Avenue to the north, and the B6471 West Road to the south – previously approved for a care home.

Speaking last year when the business bought the land, Andrew Hume, the company’s chief executive, said: “It will be our first purpose-built-from-scratch care home and it is a big step for us as a company. We are very excited about the opportunity.

“I have lived in East Lothian and was brought up in East Lothian and it is just a fantastic place.”

A virtual consultation took place with neighbours at the end of last year, with concerns about the height of the building and parking.

Since then, changes have been made to the design, which is now with the council’s planning department.

The design and access statement highlights the expanding population of Haddington and the surrounding area, which, developers feel, means there is a need for both facilities.

The document, included within the planning application, reads: “The development site provides a great opportunity to build a modern, fully compliant care home and nursery facility to serve the Letham Mains and Gateside communities and wider area.

“The inclusion of the day nursery facility reflects the strong relationship between the very old and very young that benefits both parties.

“The dual use of the site shall enliven the proposed development, creating a significant and appropriate focal point for the community.”

Each floor of the care home would be split into two wings, each housing 10 bedrooms.

Day and dining rooms would be in place on each floor, with other facilities in the building including a private meeting room, kitchen, laundry, hairdressing salon and cinema.

The one-storey nursery would be built to the south of the care home.

It would include two playrooms, changing facilities, a kitchen and office space, as well as a quiet room.

Developers describe the design as “well-considered” and feel it will not only “enhance the immediate area but also significantly benefit the wider community”.

Councillor Craig Hoy, who represents the town on East Lothian Council, welcomed the scheme.

He told the Courier: “Having worked closely with residents to block plans for a builders’ merchants, I welcome these alternative plans for a care home and nursery.

“Local residents will now, of course, be given the opportunity to respond to the specific plans and I hope they engage with this.

“But in principle this is a far more suitable proposal than the industrial or commercial uses previously given consent within this residential area.”

Plans were submitted by a different developer in the summer of 2015 for a nursing home and 30 extra-care flats on the site.

East Lothian Council approved those plans but the development of a separate nursing home on Haddington’s Mill Wynd saw the scheme ditched.

Planning permission was then given for a builders’ merchant on the site.

However, MKM Building Supplies then opted against going ahead with the scheme, with fresh plans for a care home then coming forward.