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Charles Church

Family finds forever home after life-changing injury

06 March 2020

A family of five has found its “forever” home after their lives were rocked by a life-changing accident which left their eldest son in need of extra care.

The Coe family, from Exeter were struggling to find a home to accommodate all their needs after son Tom suffered a devastating brain injury after being knocked down by a car in 2015 – but with the help of local developer Charles Church they have found the perfect solution.

The family have moved into a five-bedroom detached house in Great Woodcote Park and Tom, now 27, has own two-bedroom home in an annexe – allowing him to live safely and independently.

The annexe was converted from the home’s triple garage by Charles Church after the company heard about the Coes’ situation. The main house is now home to mum Belinda, dad Paul and Tom’s brothers Jean-Paul, 26, and Harry, 23.

Belinda explained: “After Tom’s injury on 2015 he was in hospital for nine months and then there was an extensive period of rehabilitation ahead of him.

“We were living in Christow, on the edge of Dartmoor, and we were travelling into Exeter daily for Tom’s appointments. The house itself was OK because we had a downstairs bedroom and bathroom for Tom, but the garden was steep and it really wasn’t working out at all.

“We rented for three years as we tried to find a solution that would meet all our family needs and as the time has passed we realised we didn’t want to move from the area. Tom is known to the local people and we know they watch out for him and we feel part of the community. “Since the accident he suffers from high perceptive hearing and cannot bear the sound of the vacuum cleaner or the washing machine, so it can be difficult for all of us to accommodate our day to day lives.

“Tom needs somewhere he can take himself away to if it all starts becoming too much, and somewhere safe that he can live independently.”

Belinda added: “Charles Church was selling the show home at Great Woodcote Park and we thought it would be an ideal solution to fit the family’s needs if we could convert the triple garage to accommodate Tom.

“We initially made an offer with a view to carrying out the conversion ourselves, but when the team at Charles Church heard about our situation we renegotiated, and the work was all carried out by Charles Church instead.

“From the start everyone at Charles Church recognised exactly what was needed and why we needed it and nothing was too much trouble for them,” Belinda added.

“Tom is so much happier now he has his own place, he comes over to the house whenever he wants to, and he knows he can go back to his place if he needs to be quiet again.

“We can’t thank Charles Church enough. The whole team has been wonderful and it was fantastic to see Tom moving into his new home at the start of the year. He is thoroughly enjoying his independence and we all love our new homes.”

Robert Hart, director in charge of Charles Church South West, added: “We are delighted to have been able to support the Coes by converting the triple garage into an annexe for Tom. Hopefully we were able to remove a lot of the stress by carrying out the work and project managing the whole conversion from planning to completion.

“Tom’s accident was life-changing for the whole family and none of us can begin to imagine the consequences of that. Converting the garage to provide two bedrooms, a large bathroom, kitchen and living area was the least we could do to help the family and we are delighted to hear it has had such a positive impact.”

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