Campaign launched to save pensioners day centre

Campaign launched to save pensioners day centre

Reporter:

Laura Enfield

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Campaign launched to save pensioners day centre

A concerned daughter has started a campaign to keep Gardner House Day Centre open.

Kim Walsh was distraught after learning the council plans to shut the Harrow Lane venue, which her 88-year-old mother has attended for three years.

The Royal Borough has labelled the centre 'poor quality' and said it wants to spend £40,000 moving the service to Lady Elizabeth House in Boyn Hill Avenue.

Kim said: "I'm really angry because the centre is not poorly run, it's a fantastic place and a home from home for those people.

"There's no sense at all in what the council is doing and everybody is against it."

The Royal Borough proposal is part of plans to cut £350,000 from pensioner support services.

It also wants to withdraw annual funding towards support staff in 30 sheltered housing schemes across the borough.

A consultation on the changes is underway and a report of the outcome will go to cabinet in April with approved changes made from September 2012.

Kim, 56, of Courtfield Drive, has started a petition urging the council not to close the day centre.

Kim said: "My mum is really upset and they are all pretty devastated.

"They can't fight for themselves so we have to fight for them."

The centre costs £230,000 a year to run and is open seven days a week with space for 25 people.

Her mother Binnie Peacock goes there four days a week and enjoys activities such bingo, cooking and quizzes with the other pensioners.

Kim said it makes no sense to move the service as the Gardner centre only opened six-years-ago and is better suited for people's needs.

Copies of the petition are available at Gardner House Day Centre and in local shops.

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