Leicester care homes to close

Four care homes for the elderly are to close in Leicester in the next couple of years, and a further four are being put up for sale.

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Work on Leicester travellers' sites to start in summer

Leicester City Council will spend £400,000 building the permanent travellers' sites Credit: PA

Work to construct two controversial permanent gyspy and traveller sites in Leicester will start this summer.

Leicester City Council will provide £400,000 towards the developments at Redhill Way and Greengate Lane.

Another one and a half million pounds will come from the Housing and Communities Agency.

Both sites are due to be ready by March next year, despite residents strongly protesting against them.

The city council has previously been accused of not consulting residents properly over the plans.

Unions protest against cuts in Leicester

Hundreds of people joined a protest against council cuts in Leicester today. The local authority says it needs to save £150 million pounds due to what it calls 'savage' government cuts.

Unions say some of the most vulnerable in the city will be hardest hit by the cuts including children and the elderly. Leicester City Council say they are trying to protect frontline services but the cuts will inevitably have an impact. Rajiv Popat was at the protest and sent this report.

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Halloween safety campaign to be launched in Leicester

A campaign to tackle anti-social behaviour over Halloween will be launched today in Leicestershire.

Police officers have teamed up with the city council to issue posters to residents, who can put them in their windows to make it clear whether trick-or-treaters are welcome or not.

A campaign has been launched to tackle anti-social behaviour over Halloween
A campaign has been launched to tackle anti-social behaviour over Halloween Credit: Geoff Kirby/PA

It comes after the number of calls to police about anti-social behaviour more than tripled on Halloween night last year.

Police handled a total of 247 complaints - up from the usual average of 68.

Residents to be helped through care home transition

Managers at Leicester City Council have told the residents that they will be helped through the transition out of council care.

They were told as the council explained to the residents that they planned to close or sell the homes they were living in.

Leicester City Council have made their decision after months of discussion Credit: ITV News Central

Four care homes for elderly people will be closed within the next three years and four others will be sold as going concerns, to be run by private businesses.

Residents at Abbey House and Cooper House, which will be closed next year, will be offered individual meetings with social workers to talk trough the next stages of the sale process.

There are 114 residents in the homes that are to be sold, and 47 living in the homes that are to be closed. Leicester City Council says it will help them to choose alternative accommodation.

Councillor Rita Patel said: "As part of making the decision on the elderly person's homes, I am also putting in place measures to ensure that the council's monitoring of independent residential homes will be strengthened to ensure that all homes offer high quality care."

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Closing care homes is 'the only way forward'

The Assistant City Mayor for adult social care at Leicester City Council has explained that closing or selling the eight elderly people's care homes is 'the only way forward.'

Councillor Rita Patel says the main reason for their decision is due to less people choosing to live in the council run homes.

As more people are choosing to remain in their own homes for longer, and are receiving support from us at home, we have seen a decrease in the numbers of residents moving into our elderly people's homes over a number of years.

People who are funded by the council to live in residential care have a choice about where they want to live, and currently 80% of those choose to live in homes run by the independent sector, rather than the council’s homes.

We have residential care places available for over 280 people in our homes, but only have about 160 residents. We have tested the market with independent providers to see if it would be possible to sell the homes as going concerns but their limited interest means we have had to make these tough decisions.

With all of this in mind, we have spent the past 17 months carrying out an extremely thorough review of our homes, closely examining all of the options open to us, and consulting widely with staff, residents and families.

After looking at all of the evidence, and having given careful consideration to the views expressed throughout this robust process, I believe this is the only way forward.

Council to close and sell eight care homes

Leicester City Council has announced it plans to close and sell eight elderly people’s care homes in a phased programme over the next three years.

The first three homes, Herrick Lodge, Elizabeth House and Nuffield house, which house 30 people between them, will close in 2014. Preston Lodge, which is home to 17 people, will close in 2015.

Care homes will be closed or sold over the next three years Credit: Oliver Berg/DPA/Press Association Images

Two homes, which care for 56 people, will be put up for sale during 2014 or 2015. When sold, Abbey house and Cooper House will continue to operate as care homes, but in the private sector. Thurn Court and Arbor House, where 58 people live, will also be offered for sale a year later.

The plans on the future come after the council announced in February 2012 that changes were needed to the way care homes were provided and run, with expectations for care homes rising, and numbers of residents declining.

Leicester boy's dreams could be dashed because of council cuts

Ryan Dickin suffers from a muscle-wasting disease and uses a wheelchair. He's only 17 and has high hopes for the future. But he fears his dream of pursuing further education could be dashed due to council cuts.

Ryan relies on a Leicester City Council bus to take him to school but the local authority wants to save half a million pounds over two years on home-to-school transport.

That means from September, he and many others like him won't have access to a free council bus. Rajiv Popat reports.

Alternative arrangements for Catherine Junior School pupils

Leicester City Council has put in place arrangements to enable pupils at Catherine Junior School to get back to studying, following a fire at their school earlier this month. As of 12 November, schools nearby will accommodate different year groups.

Letters are now being sent to all parents and carers of children at the school explaining where they will be accommodated, both immediately and in the longer term while the school remains out of use.

The arrangements have been put in place for the remainder of the Autumn term:

  • 104 pupils in Year 6 - Rushey Mead Secondary School, Melton Road, Leicester, LE4 7PA (welcome meeting on 9 November at 2.00pm)
  • 98 pupils in Year 5 - Soar Valley Training Centre, Gleneagles Avenue, Leicester, LE4 7GY (welcome meeting on 9 November at 2.00pm)
  • 100 pupils in Year 4 - Rushey Mead Primary School, Gipsy Lane, Leicester, LE4 6RB (welcome meeting on 9 November at 2.00pm)
  • 94 pupils in Year 3 - Taylor Road Primary School, Taylor Road, Leicester, LE1 2JP (welcome meeting on 9 November at 9.00am)

The city council is working to establish a new, temporary school on the playing fields of Abbey Community Primary School to be used in 2013 until the existing junior school is recovered or alternative arrangements are put in place.

More information can be found on the Leicester City Council website.

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