A heated meeting

On Friday I, along with the Trustees of the Christian Enterprise Foundation, hosted a public meeting in Lakenheath Village Hall. The meeting was essentially around the closure of the Lakenheath Village Care Home in December and I hoped to discuss how those who attended how we as a community wanted to plan for the needs of an ageing population here in our village.

I counted 90 people in all, which is a good number for a Friday night in February. At times the meeting was quite heated with a number of former staff wanting to vent their feelings, some family members who wanted to talk about their loved ones and others disappointed that the home has closed.

I spoke in support of the decision to close, which as you can imagine did not go down that well, but of course having made a very similar decision with regards Suffolk County Councils last 16 Care Homes before we brought Care UK on board to open 10 new state-of-the-art homes and invest £60 million in the process, I could do nothing else. In many ways given the level of regulation and complexity I was surprise that the Trustees continued to provide the home for so long and as we look forward to the brand new Home being built by Care UK people will hopefully see what is meant by the changing standards expected and now required by the Care Quality Commission in the provision in Care Homes. I encouraged all who attended to take advantage of the opening days when they come up and go to see for themselves.

There were quite a few specific questions and comments directed at the Trustees who did their best to answer openly and honestly. They also made a call for new Trustees and invited those attending to stay behind at the end and they would make contact how to get involved. I counted one but hopefully more will come forward over the coming weeks to help carry the important work of the Foundation forward, as they have a significant part to play in the future services we need to provide in Lakenheath, even if that no longer involves running a care home.

Towards the end of the meeting we did eventually turn to the issue of planning housing for our ageing population and I certainly took away a number of points that were made and have a determination to see Suffolk County Council continue to bring outside investment into our care homes and to strive to create a thriving Extra Care sector as well.

About askcolinnoble
I'm a Conservative politician-lite, I dabble a bit in Party Politics with my main focus of working hard and being a strong voice for my community making sure local government delivers quality services and fellow residents get value for money for their hard earned money they pay in Council tax | Where this Gravatar appears and I am expressing my views or liking something I do so in a personal capacity and does not necessarily reflect the views or policies of Suffolk County Council, Forest Heath District Council, the Conservative Party or come to think of it anyone else | But having said the above at an election time and to stay legal anything I write is promoted by Kerry Buist on behalf of Colin Noble, both at West Suffolk Conservative Association, Unit 8, Swan Lane Business Park, Exning, Newmarket, Suffolk CB8 7FN

One Response to A heated meeting

  1. Martin Taylor says:

    Were there two meetings?
    This does not bear much resemblance to the meeting I attended!

    “There were quite a few specific questions and comments directed at the Trustees who did their best to answer openly and honestly.”

    The first question asked prompted a refusal to answer on the grounds that the questioner did not know the facts. If she had known the facts, she would not have needed to ask the question!

    The question we all wanted answered was “Why was the home closed?”
    This was not answered, other than to (mis)quote the Care Home Regulations and repeat an earlier speech which said absolutely nothing.

    Once it was shown that the quoted requirements for en-suite facilities etc did not actually exist, it was obvious that no open and honest answers could be expected.

    In fact, the message given out was basically that the home has been closed and that is the end of the matter. We are no closer to knowing the true reasons than we were before the home actually closed, if anything there are now more questions without answers than before the meeting.

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