Last Updated on Friday, 15 February 2013 17:01 Written by Gordon Neish Thursday, 14 February 2013 15:05
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THERE was heartbreak in Dunoon today (Thursday) as Argyll and Bute councillors voted, by the narrowest of margins, to close Struan Lodge care home.
At a dramatic budget meeting in Kilmory councillors voted 17-16 to close the home. Three councillors abstained; Michael Breslin (SNP, Dunoon), Gordon Blair (SNP, Cowal) and Donald Kelly (Argyll First, South Kintyre).
The abstentions proved crucial. Struan Lodge staff who attended the meeting were said to be furious and have vowed to fight on.
The budget meeting also saw Cllr Roddy McCuish (SNP, Oban South and the Isles) step down as council leader citing personal reasons to be replaced by Cllr James Robb (SNP, Helensburgh Central). Clr McCuish is the new deputy leader, replacing Cllr John Semple (SNP, South Kintyre).
A council spokeswoman said closure of Struan Lodge is subject to: “...no viable business proposal being submitted by an alternative provider, consultation with the relevant agencies involved in the care of residents and the preparation of an implementation plan including further resident and family consultation and individual care planning,”
The spokeswoman continued: “There will be no more admissions to Struan lodge and a further report will be submitted to the council.”
New council leader, James Robb said: “This move has not been made lightly and I understand this will be worrying for residents and families.
“I would like to reassure them the council will consult with all relevant partner agencies and the residents and families before any final decision is made and a further report will come before the council.
“In these difficult times we must make the best use of resources available, while ensuring the services provided improve the quality of people’s lives wherever they live in Argyll and Bute.”
More to follow...