Hampshire County Council urges public to have say on proposal to shut care homes Solent Mead and Cranleigh Paddock
RESIDENTS are being reminded to have their say on controversial plans which could close a popular care home in Lymington.
As reported in the A&T, 35-bed Solent Mead in Lymington is set for the axe along with Cranleigh Paddock in Lyndhurst – which has been temporarily closed since 2021 – after Hampshire County Council launched a shake-up of its care services.
They are among seven county-wide earmarked for closure by 2024, with HCC saying it needs to “transform and expand” the future of its nursing and specialist care accommodation.
Proposals include opening a new care home in the New Forest at a yet-to-be-determined location – part of an £173m investment over the next five to six years.
The consultation, which was launched on 4th September, is now halfway through, and residents have until on 12th November to submit their views.
A spokesperson for HCC said: “The consultation is ensuring the views of people currently being cared for in the local authority’s care homes, their families and staff, plus an extensive range of organisations and the wider public are sought.
“Any changes would be phased over time and would help to increase the overall number of directly provided Local Authority beds to around 1,000 from the current position of just over 900 beds.”
Jane Godfrey, whose 86-year-old mother has spent the past four years at Solent Mead, previously told the A&T she would be “devastated” if it shut.
She explained her mother – who has Alzheimer’s and vascular dementia – would find a move to another home “very difficult to deal with”.
Linda Kemp, whose 100-year-old father was forced to move to Solent Mead from Cranleigh Paddock in called the situation “cruel and unfair”.
A petition against the plans has more than 600 signatures.
Views can be submitted online at www.hants.gov.uk/aboutthecouncil/haveyoursay/consultations/social-care-2023
Anyone requiring large print, audio or braille versions can call 0370 779 8102 or email AS.Consultation@hants.gov.uk
The findings will be considered by the health and adult social care select committee in January 2024 prior to a final decision the following month.