The site of a Farsley care home closed due to council budget cuts could be used for local authority housing, a report has revealed.
Last year Leeds City Council closed both Richmond House in Farsley and Home Lea House in Rothwell in a bid to save the cash-strapped authority just over £1.5m a year.
A report to be considered by senior councillors on the council’s decision-making executive board next week says the closure of both sites has been ‘successfully completed’ – and points to a possible council housing use in the future.
The report says preparatory works are under way for demolition and adds:
“Work is ongoing … to consider the future use of the surplus sites. In principle the preference is to include these sites as part of the Council Housing Growth Programme, this is subject to feasibility work, which is currently under way.”
If local authority housing is not feasible, the report states alternative options for the sites will be explored.
Richmond House closed on 28 October 2021 and the report says all attendees were ‘supported to reach their optimum with recovery focused support to return home or to undertake an assessment to support their longer-term needs’.
The report adds that the closure of both care homes has been achieved without any compulsory redundancies with: “… staff having made a successful transition to their new posts within the council, where they have chosen to remain in employment.”
The report – which can be read in full here – will be considered by councillors at an executive board meeting at the Civic Hall on Wednesday, 27 July 2022. The full agenda and papers can be found here.
Richmond House was a 20-bed residential service in Richmond Road. It offered short-term care and support to people who require convalescence following a hospital admission. Council officers last year said average occupancy since 2018/19 was 55 per cent and its gross budget was £742,000.
The closures have previously sparked a fierce political debate.
West Leeds Dispatch‘s Cutswatch series has been following council cuts over the past 18 months here.
Follow WLD’s coverage of the Richmond House closure here.