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Agenda Item No

 

The Vale of Glamorgan Council

 

Cabinet Meeting: 18 November, 2013

 

Report of the Cabinet Member for Adult Services

 

Relocation of the Woodlands Learning Disability Day Service to Hen Goleg, Barry

 

Purpose of the Report

1.         To update Cabinet on the outcome of the consultation with service users and their families concerning the proposed relocation of the Woodlands Day Service to Hen Goleg.

2.         To seek approval for the demolition of the buildings at the Woodlands site.

3.         To seek approval to consider future options for the site.

Recommendations

1.         That Cabinet notes the contents of this report.

2.         That the Director of Social Services be authorised to make arrangements for securing demolition of the buildings at the Woodlands site, in consultation with the Leader, the Cabinet Member for Adult Services and the Managing Director.

3.         That the Director of Resources be granted authority to consider options for the site and report back to a future Cabinet Meeting recommendations in respect of the same.

Reasons for the Recommendations

1.         To ensure that Cabinet is informed about the outcome of consultation with service users and carers.

2 & 3To ensure effective management of the Council's assets in accordance with the

Council's Corporate Asset Management Plan.

Background

4.         The Woodlands Day Centre in Barry is in a very poor state of repair and it has been scheduled for closure since 2011.  In May 2013, Cabinet agreed to the temporary relocation of the Learning Disability Day Service from these premises to Hen Goleg, following a consultation with the service users who would be affected by this change.

5.         Members were concerned to ensure service continuity and that the service was provided in a building which was safe and fit-for-purpose.  The Council has a long-term lease on Hen Goleg (twelve years remaining) and it had been used until this time as a day centre for people with a physical disability.  Subject to some improvements, officers judged that the venue had the space and capacity to provide in addition a day service to the clients attending the Woodlands Day Centre. 

6.         Since May, a series of consultation meetings have taken place with service users with a Learning Disability and their carers and with users of the Physical Disability Day Service (already based in Hen Goleg) who would all be affected by the proposal to transfer the Learning Disability Service.  During these consultation meetings, all stakeholders unanimously agreed that the current Woodlands Day Centre was not fit for purpose and that the service should be relocated. 

7.         Some of the people who currently use the New Horizons (Physical Disability) day service at Hen Goleg were concerned that they would lose access to rooms and services as a result of the proposed relocation of the Woodlands Day Service.  However, they were willing to engage positively with officers from Adult Services and to accept the need for compromises.  Consequently, their concerns have been addressed and the majority of service users at New Horizons appear receptive to sharing their building with the Woodlands service users.  It is proposed, therefore, that the transfer of Woodlands Day Centre to the Hen Goleg site will be completed by the 13th December 2013.

8.         Some smaller scale works have been required to Hen Goleg, not only to make the building appropriate for the needs of all service users but also to provide essential maintenance. These include:

·           fitting a tracking hoist in one of the toilets;

·           improvements to the Hen Goleg kitchen, to provide additional catering capacity;

·           redecoration; and

·           replacement of the old wheelchair lift which enables service users with a physical disability to access the toilets.

9.         The majority of the works have been completed and the kitchen installation is planned for week commencing 18th November.  This will ensure that day-time activities offered at Hen Goleg meet the needs of service users and carers for people with learning disabilities and physical disabilities and deliver positive outcomes through promoting independence, community integration and skills development.

10.      Because of their poor state of repair, there are no benefits in retaining the existing Woodlands buildings for future use and Cabinet is asked to authorise demolition.

Relevant Issues and Options

11.      It is recommended that the Council's Estates Section are requested to look at options for the future of the site and a report be presented to a future Cabinet Meeting outlining recommendations in respect of the same.

Resource Implications (Financial and Employment)

12.      The costs of the essential works undertaken at Hen Goleg (approximately £45,000) have been met from the Directorate's budget.

13.      A capital bid has been approved previously and funding is available to progress the demolition of the buildings at Woodlands in 2013/14.

14.      A permanent transfer of the Learning Disability Day Service has efficiency benefits as it enables the Directorate to use Hen Goleg fully during the period of the lease and reduce overall spend on running costs and maintenance across its day centre estate.

Sustainability and Climate Change Implications

15.      Reduction in the overall number of buildings used for day services and better use of under-occupied buildings will result in lower energy requirement overall.

Legal Implications (to Include Human Rights Implications)

16.      There are no legal implications as a direct result of this report and its recommendations.

Crime and Disorder Implications

17.      There are no crime and disorder implications as a result of this report.

Equal Opportunities Implications (to include Welsh Language issues)

18.      The move from Woodlands Day Centre to Hen Goleg will present service users with a considerably improved and safer environment.  An equality impact assessment indicated that there will be changes in some of the activities that take place at the centre but that actions are in place to minimise disruption and all opportunities to promote equality have been taken.

Corporate/Service Objectives

19.      Health Social Care and Wellbeing:

HCWB2                        Promote and support community facilities to offer a wide range of leisure and social activities helping to improve resident's health and wellbeing.

20.      Community Leadership.

CL2                   Increase customer satisfaction and improve how customers access services by developing more integrated service delivery with our partners and being more innovative in how buildings are used.

Policy Framework and Budget

21.      This is a matter for executive decision.

Consultation (including Ward Member Consultation)

22.      The day services are provided for residents from across the local authority area.

Relevant Scrutiny Committee

23.      Social Care and Health.

Background Papers

Scrutiny Committee 6th September, 2010: Day Care Services for Adults in the Vale of Glamorgan - Minute No. 360

Cabinet 15th December, 2010: Modernising Day Care Services for Adults - Minute No. C1157

Scrutiny Committee 7th February, 2011: Modernising Day Care Services - Minute No. 861 

Cabinet 6th July 2011: Modernising Day Care Services - Minute No. C1372

Cabinet 25th February 2013: Final Revenue Proposals 2013/14 and Financial Strategy to 2016/17 Appendix D.

Cabinet 8th May 2013. Day Services for People with a Learning Disability - Minute No. C1324.

Contact Officer

Lance Carver, Head of Adult Services

 

Officers Consulted

Corporate Management Team

 

Responsible Officer:

Philip Evans, Director of Social Services

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