EVERY major town in North Yorkshire could have an "extra care" facility for older people, if proposals put forward by the county council go ahead.

North Yorkshire County Council (NYCC) is about to launch a public consultation on the future of elderly care in North Yorkshire, and has said that with the older population of North Yorkshire predicted to increase considerably, it wants to replace its current string of elderly persons’ homes with 50 extra care facilities - where specialist accommodation lets people live independently with communal facilities and services nearby.

The council's figures show that by 2020 nearly a quarter of North Yorkshire’s residents will be over 65 and the number of people predicted to have dementia will have increased by more than 20 per cent.

Cllr Clare Wood, executive member for health and adult services, said extra care facilities, of which the county currently has 16 providing 649 apartments, give and "innovative and flexible model" and meet the care and social needs of older and vulnerable people, and keep them at the heart of their communities.

The new projects could be run in partnership with organisations like the NHS, Clinical Commissioning Groups and voluntary organisations, and the council wants to see them develop into community hubs.

The consultation on NYCC's "Care and Support Where I Live" strategy will run for 12 weeks from August to November.