The controversial closure date of a care home in Nottinghamshire has been approved.
James Hince Court, in North Carlton, Worksop, will close in September, four years after its closure was first decided by Nottinghamshire County Council.
The Conservatives who run the council say they are simply enacting a decision taken while Labour were in charge, and that Labour is creating a ‘storm in a teacup’.
But Labour argue it is being closed too soon, because they wanted to ensure alternative provision was in place before it closed.
There are currently three long-term residents at the care home. There are also 10 ‘intermediate care’ beds, 10 re-ablement Beds, and five respite care beds.
After the closure, the council plans to use ‘spot-purchasing’ for the beds, meaning they will essentially rent them from alternative sources.
Another care home, Bishop’s Court in Boughton, will also close in 2020.
Councillor Alan Rhodes, the leader of the Labour group on the council, said: “So much has been said about this, and I don’t intend to repeat any of it again.
“If we were the administration (in charge of the council) none of these homes would be closing yet, because they don’t meet the criteria that we set.”
Councillor Rhodes, who represents Worksop North, said because the respite care would be commissioned from external providers: “I think people will have to expect a lower level of care and support than that provided by this council and its staff.”
The leader of the council, Kay Cutts, represents Radcliffe-on-Trent for the Conservatives, and said: “This decision was taken in 2015.
“I think there is a storm in a teacup here which there doesn’t need to be. We clearly have a huge responsibility to our elderly people in our county, to make sure they are properly cared for, in settings they wish to be in, with their family’s support as well, and I think this council does a very good job of that.
“I can only say that we are going to continue to do a good job of that, and I would like to have the support of colleagues in other parties too.”
Councillor Cutts then left the meeting. Councillor Rhodes said: “She doesn’t want to listen to anything she doesn’t agree with.”
Senior council officer Sue Batty said: “The time is now right for us to make a decision on closure dates, at the county’s final two care and support centre.
“The reason for this is that strategically a lot of detailed planning has been completed to develop the right set of services for local people.
“We now have a timeline for these becoming available, and the proposed dates seek to minimise any overlap and the dual funding of services.”
“She said the timeframes allowed allowed enough time for staff to work with people who receive care, in order to find them new accommodation and support.