Manchester City Council CEO, Sir Howard Bernstein, has performed the ceremonial cutting of the turf to mark the development of a new £12m Belong care village in Didsbury, Manchester.

The Morris Feinmann Homes Trust has collaborated with specialist care operator, Belong, to develop the new Belong Morris Feinmann community care village. The village, set to open in summer 2017, received formal planning consent from Manchester City Council earlier this year and will provide a range of care and accommodation services for older people in Manchester’s Jewish community.

Speaking at the event, Sir Howard Bernstein, said: “Belong has pioneered an innovative model for older people’s care that has redefined the traditional care home. We are delighted that people in the local community, including Manchester’s Jewish population, will soon have access to this range of specialist services and facilities.”

The Morris Feinmann Homes Trust was founded in 1947 to offer shelter and assistance to Jewish refugees and holocaust survivors, and has evolved over time to provide financial support for the residential and nursing care of the older Jewish community.

Chair of the Morris Feinmann Homes Trust, Alan Wilkins, added: “Our collaboration with Belong will create an environment for the Jewish community that is fit-for-purpose in the 21st century. It offers the best in building design, together with the very latest approaches in care for older people, and will provide a rich programme of Jewish religious and cultural activities to maintain a strong Jewish ethos throughout the village.”

The Belong Morris Feinmann village will comprise six specialist households, each designed to accommodate 12 residents in private en-suite facilities. It will also feature a range of facilities open to the public, including a synagogue, exercise studio, a kosher bistro and an Internet café, and extend Belong’s award-winning home care service to people living in their own homes in the local community.

Guests at the event included the Morris Feinmann Chaplain, Rabbi Shlomo Ellituv, who marked the occasion by performing a blessing as the project got underway. Other guests included representatives from Belong, the Morris Feinmann Homes Trust and Cruden Construction, the contractor appointed to work on the scheme.