One of Scotland’s leading providers of housing for the elderly, Bield Housing, is to close a dozen residential care homes and decommission a sheltered housing service for those with the greatest care needs.
Bield Housing said that as the first step of a new five-year plan it planned to withdraw from care home provision within nine months, and promised to help residents and their families make alternative arrangements. Bield said the decision had not been taken lightly, but amid a crisis in funding in the sector, most of its residential care homes were no longer viable.
The charity is in negotiations with some local authorities to see if some homes can be kept open, but it is expected that most or all of its 12 residential care homes will close – forcing 167 residents to make new arrangements.
Bield have an ageing property stock making them unsuitable for modern care. The charity blames above all cuts in the funding available from local councils.
Brian Logan, chief executive of Bield Housing and Care, said that with staffing and running costs increasing, higher demand to cope with issues such as dementia and cuts in local authority funding, a long-term solution was needed to strengthen Bield’s finances.
“The decision is very much a last resort option,” he said. “We have carefully considered a wide range of options to continue delivery of these services however, we have been unable to find a solution that will be viable in the longer term.
“We are aware of the serious impact these changes will make to people who use our services, their families and our staff. Those impacted by the changes have been advised and in the coming weeks and months we will be holding consultation meetings to discuss what options are available to those affected – with the aim of minimising the impact as far as possible.”
The homes affected are:
- Woodlands – Bo’ness (Falkirk)
- Thornton Gardens – Bonnybridge (Falkirk)
- Grantsbank – Dunfermline (Fife)
- Gillie Court – Dunfermline (Fife)
- Finavon Court – Glenrothes (Fife)
- Lochar Lodge – Pollok (Glasgow)
- Milfield Gardens – Jedburgh (Scottish Borders)
- Langvout Court – Biggar (South Lanarkshire)
- St Andrews Court – Broxburn (West Lothian)
- West Port – Linlithgow (West Lothian)
- Haugh Street – Edinburgh
- Craighall Gardens – Edinburgh