Learning Disability - step-down housing

For people with intellectual disability Watkins House provides a graduated approach to community integration.

Recognising the importance of Transforming Care, our emphasis is on rehabilitation within this setting. Building on the independent daily living skills residents gained in hospital, we aim to provide a therapeutic re-parenting experience that will equip patients for long-term community living.

In a homely 6-bedded house, we can test risk and independence levels in close proximity of the St Andrew’s site and Multi-disciplinary Team providing a safe, structured setting ideal as a transitional step to the community.

Admissions criteria

Residents may step down from the St Andrew's secure learning disability pathway or if returning back to Northamptonshire from hospitals outside of area.
Residents will be aged between 18-65 years:

  • with a mild learning disability
  • who are detained under the Mental Health Act 2007, under the provisions of DOLS or informal
  • with a history of offending or challenging behaviour, although risk should now be manageable
  • who have successfully completed therapy programmes in secure services.

These criteria are a guide for assessing suitability. Each patient will be individually assessed by our dedicated team.

Steps towards independence


The Watkins House team will work with residents to manage independent living within a community house, including preparing meals, doing laundry, managing a weekly budget and cleaning their bedrooms.

Residents will register for physical healthcare services, such as GP and dental practices, in the local area. Where required, or if residents are part way through any therapeutic interventions, ongoing treatment can continue at St Andrew's with additional multi-disciplinary support requested via the Watkins House team.

Skilled and experienced technical instructors will help residents to build up a network of support for when they move into the community, including providing links with voluntary services, education and recreation or work placements.


Moving on

We anticipate residents will stay at Watkins House for approximately 12 - 18 months.
From the very outset we are preparing for the resident’s next step, whether in independent living or supported accommodation.

More information

Watkins House brochure

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