Fight to save care home

NMAC12-0990-1''Margaret Hawkins and Mary Holmes pictured before the start of the meeting to organise opposition to the closure of Tibshelf's Homelea Home.'The meeting was held at Tibshelf School on Monday.

NMAC12-0990-1''Margaret Hawkins and Mary Holmes pictured before the start of the meeting to organise opposition to the closure of Tibshelf's Homelea Home.'The meeting was held at Tibshelf School on Monday.

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CAMPAIGNERS for elderly residents have drawn battle lines in their fight to stop a council closing down a care home.

Protest chief Margaret Hawkins, whose 89 year-old mother Deborah Holmes is a resident at Tibshelf’s Holmlea, is so worried about Derbyshire County Council’s plans she organised a public meeting at the King Edward pub in the village, on Monday evening.

The move follows a council announcement that it has earmarked 20 care homes for closure including Holmlea as part of a £200m scheme to create about 1,600 care apartments and two community centres.

Mrs Hawkins, of Holmlea Action Group, said: “The council is turning its back on people in their final years when they should be helped to live out their last days in dignity.”

Many argued the most vulnerable could not be left in apartments, any disruption could be traumatic and that Holmlea is in a good condition.

Mrs Hawkins will present concerns to the council and urged protestors to write to the council as she organises a petition.

The council, which will hold consultations and had representatives at the meeting, claims two-thirds of its homes need renovating and it wants to provide independence.

A council spokesman said: “We promise residents will continue to get high quality care which will be as good as or better than they currently receive and we’ll do our best to make sure any move happens as smoothly as possible.”

It believes plans will future-proof care with excellent housing and support but conceded more care will be provided by the private sector but pledged that, within reason, no one will be financially disadvantaged by moving. jon.cooper@derbyshiretimes.co,uk