New homes for NHS residents

PEOPLE with learning difficulties living in NHS accommodation in Suffolk will have to move out of their homes, it emerged today.Residents with learning disabilities staying at Suffolk Mental Health Partnership's Walker Close site, off Foxhall Road in Ipswich, are being moved as part of a project to get people into their own houses.

PEOPLE with learning difficulties living in NHS accommodation in Suffolk will have to move out of their homes, it emerged today.

Residents with learning disabilities staying at Suffolk Mental Health Partnership's Walker Close site, off Foxhall Road in Ipswich, are being moved as part of a project to get people into their own houses.

NHS Suffolk, the county's primary care trust, has been given £2.6million in government funding and an extra £1.1million has been raised locally to pay for a range of properties in Suffolk where the residents will move to.

They will not be allowed to stay at Walker Close.

Brian Wesley, mental health development manager at NHS Suffolk, said: “This money will make a huge difference to these residents, as it will give them the chance to enjoy the independence of living in their own home while still receiving all the support they need.

“Working with our partners at the county council and Suffolk Mental Health Partnership we have looked carefully at each individual's needs.

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“We have also spent a lot of time talking to them about what they want in their new home, what special adaptations or equipment they may need and what support they want.

“Feedback we have had from residents who have already moved into their own homes has been very positive, so we are delighted to have secured this funding to help even more people enjoy their independence.”

Nationally by March 2010 people with learning disabilities will no longer be able to live in NHS accommodation.

Walker Close itself will not be closing. The site also has 12 acute assessment and treatment beds which are not used for long-term accommodation, and is also the base for Suffolk Mental Health Partnership's community teams.

Are you leaving Walker Close? Are you excited about the move or would you prefer to stay? Write to Your Letters, Evening Star, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich IP4 1AN or e-mail eveningstarletters@eveningstar.co.uk.

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