Unison criticises Peterborough care homes closure plan

A recommendation to close the only two city council-run care homes in Peterborough has been branded a "pantomime" by a union.

It follows a consultation on the future of Greenwood House and Welland House.

John Toomey, Unison regional organiser, said the city council consultation "justified a pre-determined decision".

Terry Rich, interim director of adult social care, said the recommendation took public concerns into account and a decision would be taken in November.

The council believes closing the care homes could save it £146,000 a month.

There are 32 permanent residents at the two homes which also offer respite care beds, interim care beds for people leaving hospital who are not well enough to return home, and day care.

'Real consultation'

If the homes are closed 184 jobs could go.

More than 6,000 people signed petitions calling for the homes to remain open. However, Mr Toomey said the consultation had ignored the strength of public feeling.

"This is going to be about who decides - the people of Peterborough or a handful of politicians with vested interests," he said.

"The council says it's looking at how it can develop alternative services, but it's like a line out of a pantomime.

"The reality is you don't do something to services until alternative provision is clearly in place."

Mr Rich said: "It was a real consultation that explored all of the issues as well as alternatives people were suggesting.

"The report going to cabinet reflects all the comments that people made."

Its recommendations and proposals for alternative services will be discussed on 5 November.

"If the council agrees on closure we would expect Greenwood to close first, probably by late November," Mr Rich said. "Welland would close by the end of February."

Mr Rich said support would be provided for staff facing redundancy.

More on this story

Related Internet links

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external Internet sites