12 Jan “Don’t Move… Improve” – OT Magazine
The C3S Modular team were delighted to be featured in the recent OT Magazine following our recent Home Living Module showcase at Kidz North & The OT Show. Below is a copy of the editorial which covers the many benefits our modular adaptations offer to individuals with specialist care requirements.
Home is where the heart is. Everyone has a special connection to their home, whether you have lived in your starter home for a year or you have dwelled in your forever home for fifty years. It isn’t just the bricks and mortar, the view from the living room window or the walk-in wardrobe space in the master bedroom that you come to love; it’s life’s firsts, it’s the community around you, it’s the fun the kids have with their friends in the local park.
When faced with life-altering circumstances, many people become afraid that all of that has been put in jeopardy. Their beautiful home no longer has the room or capacity for a wheelchair or the space for a downstairs wet room. Will they have to relocate? Not always.
C3S Modular is a company that specialises in modular housing and modular extensions. These pre-fabricated units are specifically for people who are disabled, who want to remain in their family homestead.
The unique company have helped hundreds of families refurbish and expand their houses so as to accommodate for a wide variety of illnesses and disabilities.
C3S started over 30 years ago and have assisted countless people since, in all aspects of the extension process.
They proved to families and individuals up and down the country that they could live a full and happy life in their home without having to compromise on the house and area they lived in before the circumstances arose that C3S were necessary. Their specialist modular division was set up in 1993 and that’s when the company really began to make a difference.
The business has somewhat humble beginnings and never fully intended to crack the modular homes market. The company started by manufacturing small easy-to-deploy bullet and bomb resistant buildings for clients around the world. They have modestly admitted that they built the first Home Living Module almost by accident. The basis of the Home Living Modules is to provide a warm and comfortable extension to any existing home. This quickly installed extension then gives people with restricted mobility a downstairs bedroom and/or wet room with completely level access. A spokesperson for C3S, Edward Hartley said: “Our first Home Living Module was a resounding success, but we knew we could build an even better product. Since then we have never stopped improving and 240 plus Home Living Modules later our customers continue to be amazed by the quality and simplicity of what we do.
“C3S is a large company which manufactures everything from bespoke bullet proof glass to fitting out luxury buildings around the world. People are always amazed about what a diverse business C3S is yet how we are still dedicated to making every project perfect for each client’s needs.
“Without question it is the talented team of people throughout our business. Their experience, knowledge and dedication is why customers keep coming back to us.”
Very few companies in the construction industry are prepared to invest time and resources in to developing innovative new solutions for the market. C3S’s Home Living Modules are one example of how they have developed a well-designed and cost-effective solution which is rapidly gaining traction with councils and registered housing providers around the country.
Edward remembers a job that particularly stays in his mind. Edward said:
“The one that always sticks in my mind most is when we removed two dilapidated old ‘Homes for Heroes’ bungalows and replaced them both with specially designed brand new buildings, practically in a day. It was complex logistics, but doing it this way saved the residents and local community so much disruption. Both sets of residents were delighted and all the neighbours were in the street for the whole day watching what was going on.”
Referrals normally come in to the company by telephone from either family members, occupational therapists or home improvement officers. C3S will then either conduct a home visit and design a suitable solution from scratch or provide a quote off existing plans or sketches. Regardless of the steps taken to move forward, the company don’t charge anything for creating initial plans and giving a quote. Once everyone is happy with the plans and quote they then deal with any planning permission requirements before manufacture and installation of the Home Living Module extension. It arrives fully fitted and decorated so you don’t need to do anything more once it is installed. Every little detail is thought of and incorporated in with the unit, “even down to the toilet roll holder,” reminds Edward.
One family that has massively benefited from C3S’s Home Living Modules is the Wilkenson’s. Matt is 20 years old and lives with muscular dystrophy. His life was becoming increasingly difficult, the older he was getting and the faster the illness was progressing. His mum, Karen, took charge of his care and explained what having a ‘pod’ meant to her and her son. Karen said: “We used to have to run up to Matt a lot of the time and at the time we had a shower over the bath but because the illness works from the feet up, to lift his legs up over the bath was difficult. He couldn’t have a shower without someone being present in the house, due to the risk of him falling. He is now 20, you can imagine, it was embarrassing for him to ask me, his mum. In all honesty, I used to have to wash his hair, and help him shower. It must have been awful for him at that age.
“Now he’s got his pod, he’s a different lad, a totally different lad. He doesn’t have to use the stairs anymore, he’s got his own bedroom, sitting room and wet room. He has his own doorway, he’s got a ramp outside, handrails and a light outside, if he goes out and comes back later. It’s given him a whole new way of life. It’s made such a big, big difference and it blends in very well with the house. As a company they are very good. I had to take away half of my patio but they utilised the patio stones that they needed to take away on the slope, they used them on the path around it so Matt could come round to what was left of the patio. It still blends in. The fact they thought of that was excellent, because Matt would be coming off the path onto the grass, but they utilised all my flagstones. It doesn’t make Matt feel alienated. He can still come into the garden if I’m out with the dog or he can take the dog out there.”
“Personally, I think that they should be more freely available to people with health issues. C3S came and did the measuring up and explained to me. They were all amazing. When you are having a module put in, you have an outside team and an inside team and they were all brilliant. They were very understanding and didn’t make Matt feel awkward in any way. He doesn’t like being different. They let him choose where the plugs went, the carpet, the colour scheme. I’ve got a very happy son, now.
“When people came to visit, like his older brother and sister. Everyone had to go upstairs to see him, we spent a lot of time upstairs, but now we can all be downstairs together, as a family.
“When I got the phone call to tell me that it had been granted, I cried. It was such a relief. I was so pleased.
“He’s just a happier lad. He’s more sociable, he spends more time with us as a family, he will happily come and sit with me now, in the living room, and he will freely go out in the garden and play with the dog. He joins in family conversations. It’s opened up a whole new world for him. His friends can come round with ease, even if I go to bed, because he has his own door. It’s almost like his own little flat.
“I highly recommend them. The company are excellent, they try their hardest to do it in the time that they tell you. Ours was built before the set time, so it was even more perfect.
“When it came, it looked like a Lego house on the back of a lorry. It was then lifted up by a big crane and put in place. People on the street were out taking photos. We had to vacate for health and safety reasons, but once it is placed down you can go back in. We just went out for the day, the outside and inside teams were working together, I didn’t want to get in their way.
“Personally, as the mother of a disabled son, I think it’s the right way to go forward in the future. I think it would help so many more people, quickly. I don’t think I could have tolerated a normal brick build. As a company they were brilliant. It’s made such a difference to Matt’s life, and mine.”
Find out more about our Home Living Modules