Opening of new respite centre for people with special needs

20 March 2018

A state-of-the-art respite care centre to help people with learning disabilities has been opened in Chester by Councillor Paul Dolan.

The Arc, or Abbey Respite Centre, in Abbey Square will be run by Special Care Needs Ltd and Cheshire West and Chester Council.

It offers residential and day care for people with special educational and behavioural needs, including autism and challenging behaviour.

The Council’s adult social care team has worked with Special Needs Care Ltd and Chester Cathedral to design a service which meets residents’ needs, and to identify those who will benefit from it. 

Councillor Paul Dolan, Cabinet Member for Adult Social Care, said: “The Arc will give family, relatives and carers of people with special needs precious respite and recuperation from daily and long term care responsibilities, or during periods of crisis and special difficulties.

“The launch of Arc is an example of what can be achieved when the Council and its stakeholder partners work together for the benefit of the community, and create services which support people in need.  

“We have developed a close partnership with the provider in order to ensure The Arc was designed to meet people’s needs. The Council is identifying the right people who will benefit from this service by using its experience in adult social care.” The Arc is based in an 18th Century, Grade ll listed building, next to Chester Cathedral, which was refurbished and tailored to those with special needs and autism. 

Activities at The Arc include creative arts, music therapy, information technology, cooking and motivation support. It has a multi-sensory room: is a soothing, sensory environment with restful sounds and lighting. 

For any further information, please contact The Arc on 01244 207 307 or visit

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