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Newent House in Surbiton 'likely' to face closure
7:00am Monday 28th January 2013 in News
Elderly residents of Newent House are “likely” to see their home closed as part of Kingston Council’s new adult services scheme.
Residents who were told a year ago that Newent House or another council-run home in the borough may close were informed this week.
It forms part of the Kingston at Home project, aiming to allow more elderly people to stay in their houses for longer.
Jan Hesse, whose 97-year-old mother, Irene Harmer, lives at Newent House, said: “My biggest concern is that they are steam-rolling this decision through without considering what impact it may have.
“In theory it seems OK, but in reality you are talking about very old, very frail people. My mother has been there nearly four years now and I have heard nothing but praise for it.
“The staff are just as upset by it all as the residents.”
Kingston Council aims to reduce the number of people being discharged from hospital into long term care homes by 50 per cent.
The decision will be discussed at a committee meeting on January 29.
Coun Julie Pickering, Conservative opposition member for healthy living and adult services, arranged a meeting at Newent House after being contacted by Mrs Hesse.
She said: “It is about making sure all of the change is done appropriately and in a timely manner.”
Though residents have been guaranteed homes elsewhere, they have been encouraged to find places in private housing, Mrs Hesse claimed.
Council leader Derek Osbourne said no final decision had been made, but that the move was “likely”.
He said: “Discussions have been taking place with residents and relatives of people at Newent and the people at Murray to explain the situation.
“The purpose of the closure of the residential care homes is to create the ability to open a new home specialising in dementia.
“Where people are moved we try to move them with their friendship groups or where possible with staff they know, if they are going into another home that we own.
“If it is Newent, and it’s is likely to be Newent, residents will go to places that are free at Murray or to a private care provider if they choose."