Leicester mayor offers care homes lifeline

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A consultation into the future of six care homes in Leicester has been extended by the city's new mayor.

The 14-week process officially ended on 14 June but Leicester mayor Sir Peter Soulsby said suggestions put forward by the public needed to be explored.

The city council said it needed to close the homes as more elderly people were choosing to remain at home or live in supported housing.

The consultation will now remain open until September.

Deputy mayor Rory Palmer said: "We've seen some interesting ideas emerge in the first phase of consultation about how the care homes can be improved.

"We want to take some time to explore these ideas in more detail."

In-house care

The homes earmarked for closure include Arbor House, Elizabeth House, Herrick Lodge, Cooper House, Nuffield House, and Thurn Court in Thurnby Lodge.

Two of the homes - Abbey House and Preston Lodge - would stay open for short stay and respite care. The other six were planned to close over the next five years.

Gary Garner, from the Leicester City council branch of union UNISON, welcomed the move.

"We are delighted the consultation has been extended but our main aim is to keep Leicester City care homes in-house," said Mr Garner.

The council is aiming to save £28m from its next budget with 500 possible job losses and a savings target of £82 in the next four years.

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