Leeds City Council votes to close five care homes

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Leeds City Council has approved plans to close five of its care homes, saying it cannot afford to maintain them.

The authority's executive board has voted to close Kirkland House, Westholme and Grange Court, though no deadline for closure has been set.

It also voted to shut Spring Gardens and Knowle Manor, but only after new homes are built in Morley and Otley.

The council said a sixth home, Dolphin Manor in Rothwell, could be closed or might be taken over by the community.

The Labour-led council said the future of eight remaining residential homes would be "subject to further review".

The executive board also voted to lower the fees it pays to place people in private care homes.

'Very disappointing'

The council said it would ensure that no-one would be financially worse off if they had to move to an alternative home.

It said it was "confident" that older people in Leeds would have access to high-quality care, despite the closures.

Councillor Shirley Varley, Independent councillor for Morley South, said the Spring Gardens and Knowle Manor homes had been "reprieved" for the moment.

Mrs Varley said the executive board's decision to close three other homes was "very disappointing".

"We feel for the people involved with those homes and are extremely sorry for them," she said.

"We can only look at our reprieve with mixed feelings, but at least we have a breathing space to modify the plans.

"We now have to work extremely hard to make this work with our residents and staff."

The closure decision follows a citywide consultation into the future of adult social care in Leeds.

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