New care home in Co Antrim will bring 120 jobs to town
A UK care home chain is creating 120 new jobs in Co Antrim as it starts work on its latest development.
Runwood Homes, which has a division in Northern Ireland, is opening a new care home in Glengormley. The home will have space for 80 residents and will employ 120 people.
The business already operates seven nursing homes in Northern Ireland, and a total of 65 across the UK.
Its most recent investment comes at a difficult time for the sector, which is facing increasing wage bills as a result of the government's Living Wage.
And heavily indebted UK-based operator Four Seasons recently announced the closure of seven homes in Northern Ireland - though three of them, in Antrim, Ballynahinch and Armagh, were bought over by indigenous operators.
John Rafferty, Runwood Homes' Northern Ireland director, said: "While it is a difficult time for the private care home industry, I feel that we have a clear vision to build a sustainable model that will be economically sound and deliver best practice within the community".
"I have installed a team in Northern Ireland that shares this vision and will lead us forward in developing a model of clinical excellence.
"Taking the lead on implementing our dementia strategy will be Carol Shields, who has been appointed to the position of Northern Ireland dementia services manager."
And this week, a private nursing home in Ballyclare announced it was expanding.
Hamilton Private Nursing Home has carried out a £1.5m extension to its Ballycorr Road premises, backed by Ulster Bank.
The new facilities include en-suite bedrooms, lounges, a cafe and a hairdressing salon. The nursing home first opened in 1987.