Port Stephens building firm Peter Sosso Building took top honours at the recent 2016 HIA-CSR Australian Housing Awards, as winner of the Australian Specialised Housing award for a residence designed and specifically built to meet the disability needs for young seven-year-old Lucy Blachford of Salamander, Port Stephens.
The awards were held at Hamilton Island back in May and provided the first nationally recognised win for any HIA builder of the Hunter in five years. Peter Sosso’s talents were acknowledged as one of the nation’s top builders. In 2014, the residence also took out top honours at the HIA Hunter Awards for “Outdoor Project of the Year”.
The search for a completely flat block which was disability friendly on which to build the family’s perfect residence was a difficult one for Lucy’s parents, Todd and Trudie Blachford. After a six-month search Trudie and Todd found the perfect block with a reserve at the rear and a park and a playground on the other side which was absolutely perfect, meaning the home would be one level, requiring no steps for Lucy.
Sadly, Lucy suffered a stroke during her birth, leaving her with cerebral palsy, epilepsy, visual problems and global developmental delays. Her parents were told she would never talk, walk or be a normal child. However, through her parents’ and her own determination and hundreds of hours of therapy, Lucy now walks, talks and has a fulfilling life. She attends a special class at a nearby public school and is enjoying her childhood to her fullest potential with a loving and very special support network around her…
Story and Images Marilyn Collins.