We have eight residential homes across Northamptonshire providing 24hour care and day placement care 52 weeks a year for those with a diagnosis of Autism Spectrum Disorders.

Our homes cater for a spectrum of needs.  Our Rushden, Cransley, Chestnuts, and Irchester homes offer residential places for up to 5 and 6 adults respectively.  Service users have the opportunity to develop peer interaction whilst benefiting from an individualised programme of care and education and their own personal environments.  Irchester 2 (4 bed), Hayway (2 bed) and Westfield (2 bed) provide an opportunity for young adults to learn the skills needed to become independent in key areas, such as planning, purchasing and cooking meals.  Ecton Park offers a unique opportunity for one young adult to experience important aspects of independent living with the security of high staffing ratios and individually structured care.

High staffing levels in each home enable our residents to enjoy a wide range of structured activities within the grounds, in the local community and further afield.  See our activities page for more details.


Alderwood provides a family type setting that supports the individual needs of each resident. The homes provide a highly structured environment using a Visual Communication System, where continued learning and life skills are designed to maximise the potential for independence and fulfilment.

A low arousal environment and a focus on coping skills allows our residents to participate in a wide variety of activities throughout the year. The emphasis on individual planning and care support enables our residents who have complex needs, to participate in a form of life that is not often feasible in many larger care provisions.

The integrated approach to education and care is a key component of the Alderwood ethos and staff work alongside service users to reinforce life skills, coping skills and the constructive use of leisure time.


Our homes are decorated and furnished to a very high standard.  On-site maintenance staff ensure that the ‘low-arousal’ environments are continuously maintained.

The Rushden home caters for five residents and Irchester six. Both offer spacious accommodation with individual bedrooms, all with either a designated bathroom or en suite. Each home has a large communal living area, an activity room and large private gardens.

Cransley is our newest home with six bedrooms, an ensuite and bathroom, large lounge, dining room, kitchen, utility room, conservatory and garden.  Although the general décor is in line with our other homes the young adults were all involved in choosing their own soft furnishings for their bedrooms.

Hayway is a smaller home with two bedrooms (both with their own bathrooms), two lounges, dining room kitchen and large garden room. Westfield is also a two bedded home with a bathroom, two lounges, a large kitchen and garden. Again these are both decorated to a high standard.

Ecton Park offers one service-user’s bedroom, one guest bedroom, living room, kitchen/diner and garden.  The furnishings have been chosen to meet the needs and taste of the service-user.

We pride ourselves in enabling our service users to access the wider community and offer a number of similarly structured environments to the residential homes.  Our static caravan situated near to the homes in Northamptonshire is a favourite among our service-users, offering a multitude of activities within the site, such as swimming, fishing, and cycling.  It also provides a quiet location for sedate pastimes, such as puzzles, art and crafts and reading.  In addition we have recently opened a holiday home in Heacham, Norfolk for holidays throughout the year.  Heacham home is situated near the beach and benefits from quiet surroundings that suit our service-users.  These daily outings and holidays are enabled by the exclusive use of fully risk-assessed vehicles for each residential home.

All catering is undertaken by Alderwood’s cook under the supervision of the house keeper. Laundry is also undertaken on each site. Residents are also encouraged to participate in organised and supervised cooking, domestic and gardening tasks. Hayway, Westfield and Ecton Park residents extend their living skills by purchasing their own shopping and prepare their own meals, where able. Menus are planned with staff support to ensure a healthy eating programme is followed and budgeting skills are developed.

All residents have a designated phone kept by the supervising carer for all excursions out of the home to enable on call back up to be activated.


The homes have a registered manager along with a deputy manager, senior shift leader, shift leaders and a team of care/learning support workers. Night times are supervised by waking night carers. Staffing ratios are dependent on the individuals’ needs agreed within their personal care plan.

A team of senior staff provide an on-call system that offers additional support for all service-users when and where necessary.  This service is provided in all environments and can also be requested for home visits.

All staff receive training at the Alderwood PDC (Professional Development Centre) at our head office in Ecton, Northampton.