Elderly fear they will lose vital ‘lifeline’

Signed up: Sheltered housing residents Geraldine Whitmore, David Moore and Stephanie Liquorish with their petition to save their wardens. Photo: SG300713-223NG
Signed up: Sheltered housing residents Geraldine Whitmore, David Moore and Stephanie Liquorish with their petition to save their wardens. Photo: SG300713-223NG
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Vulnerable elderly people fear they will be left in the lurch by the loss of the wardens from their sheltered housing.

Residents at Lime Court, Oak Court, Ash Court and Hampton Close, Spalding, have organised a petition and a meeting with South Holland and the Deepings MP John Hayes where they hope to save the jobs of the two wardens they describe as “a blessing and a lifeline”.

South Holland District Council announced last month that 36 posts in its Supported Housing Service were at risk because its contract with Lincolnshire County Council to provide the service was due to end on September 30.

Since the announcement a letter has been sent out to residents of sheltered housing, saying after September 30 the district council will no longer be funded to provide the service.

But yesterday, council leader Gary Porter told the Spalding Guardian he was expecting an update at last night’s full council meeting.

David Moore, who is disabled and has lived at Lime Court for just over a year said: “The two wardens we have are, in my opinion, completely dedicated to their jobs and the wellbeing of the residents.

“Only last week my neighbour had a fall and I pulled her emergency cord and explained the situation to the warden on the other end of the intercom.

“Within two minutes she was there, checking my neighbour and assessing the situation.

“Just the fact that someone who knew what they were doing and someone with a professional caring attitude was on hand, means these wardens are a blessing to those who are vulnerable.”

Residents fear that if they lose their wardens they will have to rely on calling on someone as far away as Grantham to assist them.

Mr Moore said there is also a good community centre at the Spalding complex where he lives, but it would end up standing empty and unused because there would be no one on site to unlock it and provide access.

Tony McGinty, assistant director of public health at the county council, said: “We use third parties to provide services currently and we are in the process of changing what these organisations will be contracted to provide.

“A key part of the new service will include the provision of a 24-hour emergency call-out service, seven days a week, to those who need it.”

Residents will raise their concerns with MP John Hayes and district council leader Gary Porter at the meeting at Lime Court centre on Monday at 10.30am.