Dear Nightingales....

Written on 28/11/2011, 21:15 by alisonemery
We would like to take this opportunity to thank everyone that has looked after and cared for Jean over the years. As you know Jean regarded all of the carer’s as friends and you will all be missed. Many thanks, Terry and Family

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Plan to close down senior citizens' social club in Birchwood, a huge blow to seniors

Pensioners aged up to 101 were extremely saddened, shocked and upset to learn about plans to close their group and day centers.

Members of the Birchwood seniors club based on Benson road and operational since the past 40 years were informed last week that their club would close on October 20.

But group member David Ricketts, aged 87, said that though the closing date has been extended, they had no idea for how long or why.

Mr. Ricketts added: “We have been given nowhere to go and there has been no consideration at all. We have between 40 and 50 members over five mornings a week and we enjoy having a chat and a cup of tea. You can suffer from boredom sat at home alone and there’s nothing else for senior people to do in Birchwood.”
Cyril Leake, aged 86, was also disgusted to learn that Broomfields Day Centre, Bridge Lane, would be losing staff.

He participates in the group twice a week and said he had been informed ‘support was being withdrawn’.
He added: “At our age it has come as a real blow. We live alone in empty houses but twice a week we get a bit of company, play a game of dominoes, have a few laughs and look forward to seeing new friends. The average age is 80 but one chap turned 101 a week ago.”

Both men said they were disheartened and upset that none of the people impacted by this arbitrary decision were consulted and were also mighty unhappy about the way no explanation was offered.

Steve Reddy, assistant director of adult social care, said the council ‘does not intend to stop supporting groups’ and senior managers will be visiting clubs throughout October to reassure and advise over changes to ‘Fair Access to Care eligibility criteria’.

He added: “The council is exploring ways we can help older people’s community day care and luncheon club activities to access more volunteer support and apply for grants.

“With the change to the eligibility criteria, and the reduced levels of resources the council has to meet ‘moderate’ needs, we will be seeking to encourage more people to volunteer and get involved to support these types of groups across Warrington.”