THE transfer of Devon County Council-owned residential care homes for the elderly could take place on May 1 this year. The transfer of 26 council-owned homes to Shaw Healthcare Group is part of DCC s Adult and Community Services Directorate modernisation

THE transfer of Devon County Council-owned residential care homes for the elderly could take place on May 1 this year.The transfer of 26 council-owned homes to Shaw Healthcare Group is part of DCC's Adult and Community Services Directorate modernisation scheme.If formally agreed by the council's executive committee, the move would affect six homes in North Devon: Beech House in South Molton; Oakwell, Bickington; Fair Lea, Northam; Woodland Vale, Torrington; Burrow House, Ilfracombe; and Lydiate lodge, Lynton.The council's executive committee awarded "preferred supplier status" for older people's residential and domiciliary care services to Shaw Healthcare Group in May 2007. Since then, negotiations have reached an "advanced stage", with current proposals to create a 30-year contract with Shaw.A report to the Health and Adult Services Overview and Scrutiny Committee by David Johnstone, director of Adult and Community Services, said the main issues are likely to be agreed in principle to enable a transfer after May 1."The next steps will be a visit by Shaw to each of the homes to meet the managers, staff, residents, families and local people," said the report.