Popular care home building to be demolished after campaigners lose battle

A popular former care home in South Tyneside '“ which campaigners fought to keep open '“ will be demolished.

By The Newsroom
Monday, 6th June 2016, 7:52 am
Updated Monday, 6th June 2016, 8:58 am
Connolly House
Connolly House

Plans were submitted to South Tyneside Council’s planning department for permission to flatten Connolly House residential care home, in Whiteleas, South Shields,

The 36-bedroomed home, in Reynolds Avenue, was closed to make way for the creation of a specialist dementia hub, based at South Tyneside District Hospital.

However, officers have stated that the home doesn’t require permission and it will be flattened so the area can be redeveloped.

The decision notice read: “Determination by South Tyneside Council as local planning authority that prior approval of the authority is not required for the demolition of the building.”

In early 2011, more than 1,300 petitioners backed a campaign to save the home.

Council bosses then gave the home a six-month ‘stay of execution,’ after agreeing to extend a period of consultation until August 2011.

However, in February, work began on relocating the final seven residents.

At the time, lead member for adult social care and support services, Coun Mary Butler, said: “Change can be unsettling, but I would like to reassure everybody that we will manage this difficult situation with dignity and respect to the individuals involved.

“However, it is simply not possible to continue to provide the services that our residents need at Connolly House.

“We now need to begin the process of planning the closure in a carefully managed way that takes full account of the needs of residents, their families and carers.”

“Residents have been allocated a designated social worker to make sure their views and wishes are noted and acted upon.”