A development for adults with autism and Asperger’s syndrome has been opened in North Finchley.

The Mayor of Barnet, Councillor Melvin Cohen, was invited to officially open Origin Housing’s Speedwell Court in Woodside Grange Road.

The building was originally used for retirement homes but has been remodelled to provide ten studio apartments with 24-hour on site care as well as a communal lounge and laundry room.

Cllr Cohen said: “Barnet is the second largest borough in London in terms of population and the number of Barnet residents is expected to rise to 460,000 by 2026. 

“As the population grows, there is a crying need for specialist housing like this in the borough.  

"We have a shortage of accommodation for people with autism and Asperger's syndrome in Barnet, so I salute Origin Housing for creating this scheme.”

Origin worked with council commissioners and Your Choice Barnet Autism's service manager who advised on lighting, colour schemes and design to suit those living with Asperger’s syndrome and autism.

Councillor Sachin Rajput, cabinet member for adults, said: “I am delighted that Speedwell Court is already providing people with autism and Asperger syndrome the chance to live independently but with support on hand should they need it. 

"This will ultimately give its residents the skills and confidence they need to live independently in the future.”

The development also has four self-contained one bedroom apartments with a separate entrance, which are being let as temporary housing for Barnet residents.