Axe falls on three West Sussex day centres despite protests

Despite massive protests three adult day centres in West Sussex will close as part of cost cutting plans.

And support for adults will also be axed with some learning difficulties will also be axed.

A decision to implement a new model of day services for West Sussex has been taken by West Sussex County Council’s cabinet member for adults’ services, Peter Catchpole.

It means that:

* Three day centres: the Grange in Midhurst, the Brooks in Pulborough, and Harwood House in Horsham, will be closed during 2011. There will be reinvestment from the anticipated savings for developing community day activities and this includes three new voluntary sector day clubs in the Rother Valley, Pulborough and Shoreham/Lancing areas.

* A new model of day services will be put into place over the coming year, and will be fully operational from April 2012.

* The multipurpose day centre provision currently directly provided by the county council will be redesigned to become specialist provision.

On top of the decision of the day care services Mr Catchpole also made the decision that the county council would no longer provide for moderate levels of adult social care needs.

It means that the county council will focus on substantial and critical level needs, bringing West Sussex in line with nearly 80 percent of English authorities who provide for substantial and critical, or critical level needs only.

The decision will see the county council raise its threshold of eligibility for adult social care from April 1.

It comes despite hundreds of protesters campaigning outside county hall urging the county council to rethink its plans.

Some of the savings made by the changes will be reinvested into the voluntary sector.

For the full story and reaction see this week’s Observer on sale March 17.

Are you affected by the cuts?

If so email or call our reporters on 01243 534166 (Chichester) 01243 833104 (Bognor Regis) or 07801 195 419 (Midhurst).