Reading Citizens and Reading Borough Council - 25th June 2013 - Democratic Disagreement by citizens regarding the proposed closure of Arthur Clark Old Peoples Home and the adjoining Albert Road Day Centre at Caversham Heights, north of the river Thames. Demonstration outside the Reading Town Hall by citizens objecting to a proposal by a Reading Council Sub-Committee to close both the very respected Arthur Clark Old People's Home, and the equally appreciated Albert Road Day Centre facility
The demonstration outside the Town Hall was followed by a full Council meeting to discuss the proposal officially announced by one of its Sub-Committees. This meeting was brought about as the result of the successful collection of names on a petition opposing the proposed closure which was signed by close to 4,000 persons during the last month of the four month 'consultation' period about the proposed closure.
The amendment proposed during the full Council meeting - to respect the citizens opposition to the proposed closure - was defeated in the full council vote and so the decision now reverts to be taken by the Sub-Committee which proposed it, which is due to discuss the proposed options on Monday 1st July 2013.
Press information regarding the proposed closure can be found by searching online at:
The "SAVE ARTHUR CLARK" Campaign can be contacted via its twitter account at:
Fears over Arthur Clark Home consultation
10 Jun 2013 08:27
Council admits its preferred option is to close The Arthur Clark Home in Albert Road which provides accommodation for 24 people and respite care.
Town hall bosses have been accused of "paying lip service" to a consultation on the future of a Caversham care home.
Reading Borough Council admits its preferred option is to close The Arthur Clark Home in Albert Road, which provides accommodation for 24 people and respite care.
The authority says it would cost more than £1 million to bring it up to modern standards including roofing, electrical and plumbing works and the installation of en suite facilities.
The council insists no decision has been made, despite proposals to move residents out.
Resident Emily Smith, 86, said: "I don't look on it like a care home, it's more like a hotel -- I can't find a fault with it. All this about having your own bathroom is rubbish. No home has got that.
"I feel terrible knowing they are going to get rid of it."
Her daughter, Susan Booker, 59, said many residents had been in tears and were feeling stressed.
She said: "When we used to come into the home it was really happy, and now when we visit my mother all the residents talk about is the closure."
Mrs Smith's daughter-in-law Jenni Smith, 47, added: "Our view is they have already made the decision and are just paying lip service by having these meetings.
"It's a right site for development, it's in the heart of Caversham Heights. I reckon they are going to raze the whole lot to the ground and sell it for development."
Resident Madeline Coates, 89, wished in hindsight she had stayed living in her bungalow.
She said: "I don't want to go anywhere else.
"It breaks my heart. I told them at the meeting, if you close this home you'll break my heart. I said that and I meant it."
Another, Maureen Broadhurst, 84, added: "It was a shock when we were told it might be closing.
"When my friend came in here she told her daughter how much she liked it and she was going to stay here for the rest of her life."
Reading Borough Council said minutes of meetings had now been sent to residents and families and its priority was to ensure it did everything possible to manage any change sensitively.
It explained the cost and works needed to bring the home up to standard were based on similar work undertaken at The Willows care home in Whitley in 2010/11.
Rachel Eden, lead councillor for adult social care, said: "I am very much aware that this is a very difficult time for residents of Arthur Clark and their families.
"The consultation hasn't closed yet but I promise that the council will take the feedback very seriously and the decision will be made in public."
The council's consultation is available at www.reading.gov.uk/council/consultations
An online petition against the closure can be found at http://chn.ge/YK83Bd.