LETTERS: Your letters to the editor this week - The Solihull Observer

LETTERS: Your letters to the editor this week

Solihull Editorial 13th Jan, 2018   0


Many thanks for your coverage of the closure of St Leonards Day Centre (page 3, January 4 edition), which provided a meeting place, food and entertainment for elderly people from in and around Solihull for 25 years.

If you don’t mind, I cannot let the spokesperson for Solihull Borough Council get away unchallenged regarding the comment provided to you on its behalf.

To say the council is ‘sad to hear’ the day centre has closed is nonsense; they’ve known for two years it was closing, after they told us they were ending their small, but significant, financial support.

It was to Rick Smallwood’s credit, and financial management, that we managed to last until last month. And the council’s contribution to helping to plan for its future was to suggest we charge these elderly people £60 per day to use it.

Yes, £60 each day! Where on earth do they expect these people to find that kind of money from? Sadly, that’s the problem; the people who make these decisions have their secure public service jobs and regular income, and absolutely no idea how real people exist from week to week, especially those who survive on a state pension.

The council’s attitude throughout the process was appalling, and left me with a very sour taste. But, sadly, to them, we we’re just a figure in an accounts brief.

Sandra Austin, manager, St Leonards Day Centre, 1997-2017.

We are now heading towards a major winter crisis in the NHS and what do I read in the Solihull Observer . St Leonard’s day care centre for senior citizens has been closed .

How short-sighted can Solihull Council be not to recognise the link between the good social care offered by centres such as St Leonard and the benefit that has on the long-term physical health of the service users . There can also be a knock on effect on the health and well-being of their long term carers.

How long will it be before one of these elderly clients possibly finds themselves needing the care of either Solihull or Heartlands hospital A&E department? It is false economy not to invest in community day centres.

Wake up Solihull Council , if care in the community is going to work there needs to be more fully staffed and funded centres available, not less.

Social care and health care should no longer be seen in isolation , the two services should work together for the benefit of the whole community.

As the ageing population is growing the demand for services like St Leonard’s is going to increase . Community support makes a vital contribution to elderly care and helps to reduce bed blocking of the acute hospital services.

Gill Beyer

Solihull Labour Party Member

On behalf of Shirley Lions Club, I should like to thank all the residents of Shirley and Solihull Lodge who contributed so generously to this year’s Christmas Sleigh collection.

In the run-up to Christmas we managed to collect the magnificent sum of £6,622, which will be used to fund a number of local, national, and international Lion’s projects starting with the Shirley Pensioner’s New Year party at the Shirley Community Centre on Saturday January 13.

I must also express our thanks to Asda, Sainsbury’s, Tesco’s, and Marks & Spencer for allowing us the use of their stores plus the “Friends” of Shirley Lions, Knowle & Dorridge Lions, SoLO, Shirley Sea Cadets, St James School PTA, and Shirley Lions Young Leaders in Service for their support with the collections, as without their help such fund raising would not be possible. Special thanks are also given to Renault, Solihull as without their Renault Koleos we would not have been able to cover all those roads, especially those in the snow and ice.

Anyone interested in finding out more about Shirley Lions should visit our Facebook page, visit www.shirleylions.co.uk or telephone 0845 833 9547.”

Lion Ken Barker

Shirley Lions Club

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