Residential Services consultation

Residential services logoConsultation meetings over the past week were held at Maesknoll, Rockwell, St Peters and Westleigh Elderly People’s Homes.

Back in 2008, decisions were made about the future of these homes by the Residential Futures Project. Maesknoll and St Peters were identified for closure and sale, Westleigh was partly developed into a Resource Centre and Rockwell was identified for modernisation as a home for people with dementia.

As a result of the downturn in the economy these plans were put on hold in 2010 pending a review. The residential consultation is part of this review.

When the consultation ends on 29th February, Council officers will produce a report, which will include the views expressed during the consultation. The report will give possible options on how residential care in Bristol could change and make recommendations to assist Cabinet to decide on a way forward.  The Cabinet meeting will be held on March 29th 2012.

Maesknoll is a home for 40 people situated in a Hengrove housing estate. It currently has 26 residents.
Rockwell is a home for 30 people with Dementia situated in a quiet cul-de-sac in Lawrence Weston. It currently has 26 residents.
St Peters is a home for 30 people situated in a residential area of Horfield. It currently has 22 residents.
Westleigh is situated in a residential area of St George close to Troopers Hill. It has 20 long-term residents on the ground floor and 10 short-term beds on the first floor. A day centre also operates on the same site.

At meetings over the past week, families at all the homes expressed confidence in the staff considering them to be well trained and providing a good caring environment which gave security to residents and peace of mind to families. Training and a positive ethos have been highlighted as important areas to focus on when monitoring and ensuring quality.

Combating isolation was raised and a consistent view is that the residential environment provides the opportunity for good informal socialisation. As one resident put it “It’s nice to have someone to sit with and do nothing”.

Tell us what you think.

Fill out the questionnaire about Residential services in Bristol online.
We have received 174 questionnaires about residential services so far.

2 thoughts on “Residential Services consultation

  1. Thanks for your comments, Terry

    I share your concerns. Everyone I talk with and work with are determined that we provide more and better services over the years to come for your father and his generation, our generation and our children’s generations.

    The challenge is to do that, yet still live within our means. It is wrong to spend money that we do not have, or at least can afford to borrow. Borrowing money to pay our national interest payments is just not sustainable.

    Bristol spends well over a billion pounds of public money every year on health and care services. In addition, many millions are spent by individuals funding their own care, and it is estimated that carers provide services that would cost between £300m and £500m per year in caring for Bristol residents.

    We currently have 141 residential and nursing care homes in the city. Just 11 of those are council run. Many of those residential and nursing care homes are not full. People are preferring to be supported in their own homes for longer, and options such as Extra Care Homes are offering strong alternatives to residential care homes.

    With personal budgets, residents and their families and carers have more choice and control on how they want their needs met.

    You raise a number of other issues, and I will make sure they are included in the feedback.

    Finally, people can write their own Living Wills. There is some excellent advice on this on the AgeUK web site at

  2. Not all elderly are healthy, many like my father have falls and what was formerly a 85year old healthy man has become a 87 year old man with dementia after two bad falls and two small brain haemorrhages. We need to keep the care homes open and back them up with people who will care for the elderly who become ill with no chance of ever recovering. The problem is, with people like my father, nobody knows how long they live and their care needs will gradually become greater as their dementia increases. If the council takes away money from places that help our elderly care homes, what is to become of sick and elderly people who need help because they can no longer function independently without it? Not only that, it may just be that one day you yourself may be in their position.
    Perhaps we should be asking a different question, perhaps we should be asking what we would want to happen to us, right now, if suddenly one of us had a stroke and ended up with dementure? What would we be expecting to happen to us when we could no longer look after ourselves?
    I’m sure the answer is going to be much different to the one you are asking now. If it was you yourself in this situation, would you wish to be moved from pillar to post, not understanding what was happening to you or where you were going or who you were? You would be hoping that you would be looked after and helped, not moved about.
    Unless you have a relative who is like this, you have no idea what they are going through and how it affects you. To see your mother or father and be talking to them and then he or she asks you who you are? It is imperative that the council give as much as possible to the care homes and make them as cheap as possible for people to get into and be helped, for as long as they need it.
    The only other way out of this is if the council helps change the law so that people in this country can write their own living will that if they become unable to look after themselves they can
    initiate their own euthanasia.
    I know this may seem farfetched and wrong, but there are times when my father is in his own mind he tells me and others that he doesn’t want to go on like this and when will he ever get better? It is not a normal way for us to live, it is not a way of life that is good for anyone, including the person who is going through it, living it day by day. It is also hard for the caring staff to cope with elderly and young people who suffer with dementure at an early age and need the help of social services to get them into a home to be looked after because they cannot cope in the normal community.
    Why can’t they live in the normal community? Because they would not be treated fairly, people would make fun of them, they could hurt other people and they could end up wandering off getting lost or even killing themselves. So we have no option but put them into care homes so that they can be cared for for the rest of their days in the best way we can, the way in which we would like to be treated, the people who are the ones making the rules. Don’t forget, the rules and cuts you make now, make come back to bite you in backside in a few years’ time, or your own partner, then what will you think of your cutbacks?
    This does not mean leaving them in their rooms, covered in their own urine and soiled beds or clothes and getting no nourishment because the care home does not have enough money to care for the people properly.
    Perhaps the council should work out how much it costs to keep a person in a care home and then put this figure right across the board, even for the private sector. Make it the same price so that everyone gets the best care, the care that we would expect to get if we were there. After all, we, ourselves wouldn’t want to be left for hours on end left in our own urine and faeces just for a few pounds, would we? But perhaps that is what you want to happen, especially to the very people who fought in a world war so that we, their children could be fee of tyranny. Please don’t inflict our tyranny on them, I’s up to us to fight back now and look after them like they did for us, even if we were not born at the time, they still fought bravely for a better life.

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