Sadness as care home is a victim of council’s cuts

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A CARE home has shut after the county council could no longer afford to run it.

Abbotsbury in Hillmorton closed earlier this month, meaning all residents and users of the services it provided had to move elsewhere.

Pauline Lewis, of Bilton, has commended the staff at the home, who have looked after her 91-year-old mother for the past five years.

“There has been much bad press for care homes lately, but the staff at Abbotsbury were fantastic and did a wonderful job,” she said.

“I feel so sorry for those that have lost their jobs and I’m sure I speak for many people when I say thank you to them for their dedication.

“They were very upset when they had to say goodbye to the residents – but that was because that was what it was like there, it was one big family.”

The county council has been criticised for passing on cuts to services such as care homes, and there have been concerns over relying on the private sector to provide services in their place.

John Young, whose mother-in-law used to be cared for at Abbotsbury while he and his wife Sandy received respite as carers, said in February: “It concerns me to hear homes are 40 per cent cheaper to run privately. If it is that much cheaper then will the quality of care be lower?”

Cllr Izzi Seccombe, the county councillor responsible for adult, health and community services, defended the decision to shut the home, which had 19 long-term residents and 38 members of staff. She said: “The costs of our internal provision are unsustainable, especially when quality services can be provided more efficiently in the external market.”