Council to relocate services for vulnerable adults

Day centres, supported living and respite services will be affected by the plans.
Photo of RBC Civic Offices

A range of council services for vulnerable adults in Reading are to be relocated to two new sites, under plans set out this month.

The services will be based at the redeveloped sites of the old Central Pool in Battle Street or the previous nursing home, The Willows in Hexham Road, Whitley. New council housing, including family sized houses, flats and sheltered accommodation will also be built on the sites.

In some cases the number of places at the new locations will not match the number of people needing the services in the future, but Reading Borough Council says ‘flexible’ ways of working will overcome this.

Plans for day centres, mental health flats & respite

  • Focus House mental health supported living

    Moving from: two houses in Castle Crescent     Moving to: Battle Street sit

    Number of people per year needing the service:
    Now:
    14           By 2025:14                By 2030:14
    Places to be provided: 14

    RBC rationale: More people will be encouraged to develop life skills to move on to independent living, so the same 14 people will not be living there year to year.
     

  • Learning Disability Day Service

    Moving from: Strathy Close, Tilehurst           Moving to: Hexham Road, Whitley

    Number of people needing the service:
    Now:
    27      By 2025: 52      By 2030: 77
    Places to be provided: 31

    RBC rationale: Lower needs could be met elsewhere such as from Mencap. The new service could open 8am-8pm with half-day sessions so more people to use it.
     

  • Learning Disability Respite Service (to give carers a break)

    Moving from: Whitley Wood Lane             Moving to: Hexham Road, Whitley

    Number of people needing the service:
    Now: 9      By 2025: 74      By 2030: 139
    Places to be provided: 9

    RBC rationale: Respite to be delivered in a more flexible way, which will maximise the building's use and ensure equity in the number of nights given for each person.
     

  • The Maples Older Person’s Day Service

    Moving from: Rivermead Leisure Centre             Moving to: Battle Street

    Number of people needing the service:
    Now:
    56      By 2025: 56      By 2030: 56
    Places to be provided: 35

    RBC rationale: People start or leave each year due to changing needs. The service will be co-located with extra care/sheltered housing so people support each other.

The council carried out public consultations in 2018 with Focus House residents and families using the LD respite service. Further consultations are likely.

The plans also state that there are three blocks of sheltered housing flats in Reading which are unsuitable because lifts can't be installed or they are far away from local amenities. Modern housing would be built for existing and new tenants, at the two sites.

The plans were set out at the Reading Borough Council policy committee meeting on 18 January 2021.

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