Lib Dems say care home decision was made ‘cut and dried’ months ago

14:43 16 June 2014

Oakwell at Bickington is one of the North Devon care homes facing closure.

Oakwell at Bickington is one of the North Devon care homes facing closure.


Opposition leaders say there is ‘no surprise that axe has been wielded’.

OPPOSITION Liberal Democrat councillors on Devon County Council have criticised the Conservative-run council’s decision to close 20 residential care homes and 17 day care centres across Devon.

Lib Dem group leader Cllr Alan Connett said the decision was already ‘cut and dried’ months ago.

In a statement issued after today’s announcement, he said cuts announced in the budget in January – and the fact that Conservatives were mainly silent at the special ‘cuts’ budget meeting last month – demonstrated that few should be surprised by the axe being wielded today.

“Devon is a ‘pickpocket’ council; it’s put up council tax, while cutting services,” he said.

“We believe there have been unfair comparisons. The county council says it costs more each week to have a resident in its care homes than it does to buy a bed in a private care home.

“However, we hear that the county has been encouraging people towards the private sector which can have led to council beds being empty and costs appearing to be higher.

“I very much welcome the two specialist dementia centres and appreciate the council has said the closures of the 20 homes will take place over up to 18 months, but really we all know the truth.

“The Conservatives don’t want to run services for Devon’s residents, they want to be money men, managing budgets and buying care services as though it was a supermarket tin of beans.

“With no council-provided care homes, it will be interesting to see if there is now new pressure from the private care sector for higher prices for care beds,” added Cllr Connett.

He said closure of 17 day centres and amalgamation of others will make this a bitter-sweet day for many families across the county.

“We welcome the news that 17 centres will remain open, although some are being amalgamated, but we will need to ensure that proper care is taken of those who will lose their day centre services to ensure proper alternatives are put in place,” said Cllr Connett.

“We need to read the detail of today’s announcement, which is lengthy. What we do know is that many people will believe these decisions were already made - and simply announced today - regardless of the consultation and pleadings from residents and communities over the past months.”

Related articles


Welcome , please leave your message below.

Optional - JPG files only
Optional - MP3 files only
Optional - 3GP, AVI, MOV, MPG or WMV files

Please log in to leave a comment and share your views with other North Devon Gazette visitors.

We enable people to post comments with the aim of encouraging open debate.

Only people who register and sign up to our terms and conditions can post comments. These terms and conditions explain our house rules and legal guidelines.

Comments are not edited by North Devon Gazette staff prior to publication but may be automatically filtered.

If you have a complaint about a comment please contact us by clicking on the Report This Comment button next to the comment.

Not a member yet?

Register to create your own unique North Devon Gazette account for free.

Signing up is free, quick and easy and offers you the chance to add comments, personalise the site with local information picked just for you, and more.

Sign up now

Other News Stories

Yesterday, 18:08

The funeral of well-known volunteer Doris Stevens-Munn will be held this week on Thursday, October 8.

Read more
Yesterday, 13:52
You can lead a horse to water.... Jessie the horse is pictured in the bar at The Poltimore Inn, North Molton, with landlord Alan Boddington. Picture: Submitted

No long faces as horse walks into North Molton’s Poltimore Inn for breakfast

Read more
Yesterday, 10:57

Tell us your favourite thing about North Devon by tweeting us using #WeAreNorthDevon.

Read more
Yesterday, 09:17

Fire fighters are currently at the scene of a large barn blaze in Combe Martin.

Read more
Sunday, October 4, 2015

Police investigate after man found dead at bottom of steep flight of steps onto beach near Ilfracombe.

Read more
Sunday, October 4, 2015
Captained by OC 22 Sqn Wg Cdr 'Sparky' Dunlop the crew landed safely after their training flight. Today marked the end of operational SAR coverage for the RAF in the UK. Image taken by Corporal Peter Devine,RAF Photographer from SAR Force HQ.

Brand new search and rescue base at St Athan means Chivenor’s 22 Squadron will no longer carry out rescues in North Devon.

Read more
Sunday, October 4, 2015

North Devon Council will be among those encouraging youngsters to take an interest in politics

Read more
Sunday, October 4, 2015
Sue Ashmole and Phil Alexander with alpaca and residents at Herons Lea.

Residents of Herons Lea enjoy the attentions of some cute long-necked visitors

Read more
Sunday, October 4, 2015

Coroner believes Edward Ireland may have had family in Devon.

Read more
Saturday, October 3, 2015

Fire fighters called out to North Street in Northam last night (Friday).

Read more

Local Weather



max temp: 17°C

min temp: 10°C

Most Read News

Great British Life

Great British Life

Useful Links

Advertise in the paper
Submit a Story
Subscribe to the paper
North Devon Football League
Order Photos
Family notices
Google Plus Page
Reader Travel

Family Notices 24

Read Online

Read the North Devon Gazette e-edition E-edition

Search for a job in Devon

Local business directory

North Devon's trusted business finder

Find planning applications