By: 18 September 2019
Irwin Mitchell advises Saint Cecilia’s on purchase

Irwin Mitchell in Leeds has advised Saint Cecilia’s Care Group as the Scarborough care provider continues its expansion with the purchase of a care home in Yorkshire.

Saint Cecilia’s has acquired the Alba Rose care home in Pickering from a family owner. The acquisition brings its ownership in the sector to five care operations: three care homes, a nursing home and a day care centre.

The Scarborough care provider was advised by Irwin Mitchell’s Leeds office. This is a new client for the firm, which advised on the real estate, banking, corporate and employment aspects of the purchase.

Mike Padgham, managing director at Saint Cecilia’s, said: “We are delighted to welcome the Alba Rose and its excellent staff and lovely residents into the Saint Cecilia’s family. The home has an enviable reputation based on excellent care delivered by the Whincup family over 35 years and we look forward to building on that in the future. It will be very much business as usual for all the staff and residents.”

The Alba Rose, at Keldhead Hall, in Middleton Road, Pickering, accommodates up to 22 residents. A spokesman for Alba Rose said: “After owning the home for so long it is going to be sad to leave but we are happy to be leaving the home in the safe hands of a family-owned care company that shares our values. We wish them all future success with the home.”

The Alba Rose shares a name connection to Saint Cecilia’s. The building used to house a community of nuns, one of whom, Sister Cecilia, taught music.

The purchase of the Alba Rose is part of steady and planned growth for Saint Cecilia’s and brings its staff up to around 160 and the number of people it provides care for up to more than 125.

Padgham added: “To survive and prosper in the current economic climate, we believe that the business needs to be a certain size and the purchase of Alba Rose goes towards achieving that size. It helps us to grow and strengthen the company and the care offered and also provides opportunities for progression across the group for all our staff.”

The team at Irwin Mitchell in Leeds was led by real estate senior associate Clare Davitt, with partner Gavin Maddison advising on corporate matters and senior associate Padma Tadi on employment issues.

Davitt, who also advised NatWest on the banking aspects on a dual represented basis, said: “The UK care market is expanding as our population ages and now employs around 1.45 million people, just over 40% of whom work in care homes. Despite this growth, demand is outstripping supply and there is a shortage of provision for our older and vulnerable members of society. We are delighted to have worked with St Cecilia’s which offers a family run ethos, attractive to residents and users, as they expand their provision for quality care in this market place.”