THE COMPANY behind plans to transform derelict eyesore Tricorn House into a nursing home has insisted the building will be ready to welcome its first residents by early next year. Stroud District Council , which granted planning permission to convert the former Cainscross office block into a 96-bed high dependency care home in 2010, this week criticised the 'evident lack of progress' on site and the fact that no application has so far been made to register the home with the Care Quality Commission.

Cllr Dennis Andrewartha, executive member for planning at SDC, said the situation had left the council feeling 'frustrated and sceptical that anything is actually going to happen.' But Keith Coghill, managing director of Cheltenham-based care provider Summerfield Medical Ltd, said full-scale renovation works will begin on site by the autumn, after which the CQC will be invited to review the plans.

Specialising in caring for patients with a range of physical and mental health conditions, the home will be managed by a subsidiary of the company called Summerfield Medical Stroud Ltd.

In July 2011 the firm, which also manages a care unit in Cheltenham, was granted additional planning permission to add a fifth storey for staff accommodation on top of the building, which was constructed in 1972 as offices for the then Department of Health and Social Security and has since stood vacant for more than a decade.

"Contrary to how it might look, there has been a lot of work happening on site," said Mr Coghill.

"We have had a couple of setbacks but we are still on course for an opening in the first quarter of next year.

"There has been a great deal of surveying and preparation work taking place, so when we do start renovations we will not have any hiccups.

"Tricorn House has become renowned for all the wrong reasons but I can promise you it will be beautiful once we have finished and will be known for a right reasons after that."