Hammersmith & FulhamNews

Chelsea FC completes purchase of neighbouring veterans housing complex

By Ben Lynch, Local Democracy Reporter 

Chelsea FC has completed its purchase of the veterans housing complex Sir Oswald Stoll Mansions, just weeks after residents fearing eviction were promised none would be made homeless.

Stoll, the charity which runs sites including the Mansions in Fulham Road, has also confirmed it is in the final stages of buying 128 affordable homes on the King’s Road Park estate.

Chief Executive Will Campbell-Wroe said he expected residents would be able to begin moving in between January and June next year.

Veterans living in the Mansions, which include people who have served in countries from Northern Ireland to Afghanistan, as well as war widows, raised the alarm after Stoll’s Board of Trustees agreed to sell the site last October for a reported £80million.

Stoll announced at the end of March that no veterans would become homeless, and that it would support all of those having to leave the Mansions.

While most of the residents were due to be supported, with some able to remain on a part of the site not being sold, about 40 flats were to be left to make their own arrangements.

Stoll Mansions, with Stamford Bridge recognisable in the background  (Picture: Local Democracy Reporting Service)

One resident, Guy Cholerton, described the potential impact on his mental health if the deal was to go ahead as-planned, with concerns about whether he would be able to retain his job.

Mr Campbell-Wroe said: “We understand that any transition to a new home will be challenging for many of our residents, and we are committed to providing every resident with an enhanced programme of financial, wellbeing and rehousing support – as we have been throughout this process.

“The completion of the sale marks a transformational moment for Stoll, and forms a central part of our long standing mission to house and support many more veterans to lead fulfilling, independent lives both now and in the future.”

Mr Campbell-Wroe added that for those who choose to live somewhere other than a Stoll property, the charity will provide 12 months of support.

Mr Campbell-Wroe said: “We are also very grateful to Chelsea for its longstanding support for Stoll, through ongoing fundraising initiatives like its Big Stamford Bridge Sleep Out, and its support of the veterans throughout this process.”

Jason Gannon, Chief Operating Officer at Chelsea FC, said: “We are delighted to increase our footprint at Stamford Bridge and take a significant step towards ensuring the long-term financial sustainability of the club.”

Pictured top: Guy Cholerton served for more than 20 years in the Coldstream Guards (Picture: Local Democracy Reporting Service)

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