AXED – Age Concern to shut down services in Budleigh

PUBLISHED: 11:57 02 March 2020 | UPDATED: 12:02 02 March 2020

Trustee Graham Taylor (centre) with volunteers and manager of Age Concern Janet Pester (right). Picture: Dan Wilkins

Trustee Graham Taylor (centre) with volunteers and manager of Age Concern Janet Pester (right). Picture: Dan Wilkins


Lifeline services for the elderly in Budleigh Salterton have taken another hit today as Age Concern announced it is closing its day centre.

Following on the heels of the imminent closure of the Abbeyfield Shandford, Budleigh Salterton Age Concern has confirmed the current facilities provided at the health and wellbeing hub will end on April 30.

The charity provides a drop-in service for people over the age of 50 on weekdays, and day care at least two days a week, at the former Budleigh Hospital in East Budleigh Road.

Former Budleigh GP Graham Taylor, chairman of Age Concern, said he is 'extremely disappointed' that the service is going to close, but hopes its lunch club can continue 'in one form or another'

Dr Taylor said their service has become 'economically unsustainable'.

He said: "The charity is an established part of Budleigh Salterton life, giving elderly people in the local community a great service.

"However, in the present climate when care is focusing increasingly on assisting clients in their own homes rather than in day centres, our provision at the hub has become economically unsustainable."

Age Concern said the welfare of its clients is of 'paramount importance' and it will do 'everything possible' to provide suitable alternatives.

Dr Taylor said: "It is appreciated how much anxiety such a change will cause, but the trustees and staff will be available to talk through the process with clients and members of their families.

"Trustees will offer support and information and where needed assist with making referrals to Social Services for assessments."

The charity will offer full redundancy payments to its staff to help them secure new career opportunities.

Dr Taylor added: "The Trustees are hugely grateful for the valuable contribution made by the team of volunteers without whose loyal support, Age Concern could not have been so successful over the last 30 years."

According to Age Concern Budleigh Salterton, Westbank, which runs the hub, said it is going to make 'every effort' to reduce the impact of the change for existing clients, and will be seeking to make use of the space vacated by the charity to meet the future needs of older people.

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