A community housing association is set to close a number of its flats for older people in Watford and Three Rivers because they are not fit for purpose - but it won't be building any more for five years.

Watford Community Housing Trust is set to close the 22-tenant sheltered accommodation block, Lincoln Court, in Haines Way, next year.

The trust said the homes "cannot be physically or economically brought up to modern standards".

It also revealed plans to use the site to develop 21 new affordable family homes, after it reported 8,000 households were on the waiting list across the two boroughs.

Staff met with tenants at Lincoln Court this week to inform them of the proposals for the scheme.

The trust has said it will work with the current tenants to find suitable alternative accommodation over the coming year, and will provide financial assistance to help with their moving costs.

It said Lincoln Court has "reached the end of its life" because the old fashioned layout and lack of en-suite facilities has made the homes difficult to let in recent years - with three of its flats remaining empty for long periods.

As part of its Older People’s Housing Review, the trust will be modernising Horwood Court, a sheltered housing scheme in Hillrise Avenue, north Watford.

The scheme, which currently has shared bathroom facilities, will be improved to include an en-suite shower for each flat, bigger circulation spaces and wider entrance doors. The trust is also installing a lift.

In the next five years, the trust said it intends to build a new state of the art sheltered housing scheme in one of its community areas, which will have up to 50 flats and will be built and equipped to the latest standards.

Tina Barnard, chief executive of Watford Community Housing Trust, said: "We want to provide housing that is fit for older people now and into the future, which is why we are modernising Horwood Court and will be building a brand new sheltered scheme over the next five years.

"Sadly Lincoln Court no longer meets modern living standards, which is why we are taking the difficult decision to close it. However, we will be using the site to help meet the urgent need for more affordable homes in Watford and Three Rivers."

Residents are invited to a drop-in consultation meeting about the new homes the Trust proposes to build in Haines Way, which will take place at the Orbital Community Centre from 4.30pm to 7.30pm on Thursday, July 31.