Two care homes in County Londonderry, including Ard Cluan in the city, will close in a relocation to a redeveloped care home in Garvagh.
The Presbyterian Church in Ireland (PCI) has announced that it is to purchase the former Four Seasons care home in Garvagh to create a new residential care home for older people, including those with dementia.
Four Seasons announced at the beginning of this year that the care home in Garvagh would close. Now, however, PCI say they will complete a £1.5 million redevelopment and refurbishment of the home will increase overall residential care for older people, with the creation of 50 en suite rooms. It will also involve the relocation of services from its Londonderry and Portrush residential care homes, Ard Cluan House and York House, which will be sold.
Making the announcement, Lindsay Conway, Secretary to PCI’s Council for Social Witness - which has overall management responsibility for the Church’s six residential care homes for older people and its other services – said, “As the continued wellbeing of our residents is our priority, this development is an exciting opportunity for the future as we are committed to improving the standard of our residential care.
“Due to changing legislation, increasing standards and rising expectations of residents and their families, we review aspects of our service provision regularly. This ensures that our residents across all of our homes are provided with the best care. Unfortunately, Ard Cluan and York House, which were both built in 19th Century, no longer provide the opportunities for improvement.”
He explained that the envisaged relocation to the new site, which is only 20-years-old, would increase PCI’s ability to provide much needed residential care for older people in the north west region, including services for those with dementia.
“There is huge potential in Garvagh to create a wonderful, modern and welcoming home with a Christian ethos that will be fit for purpose for many years to come. We do however, understand the complexities and issues associated with the move, which is why throughout the process we will keep our residents, their relatives and our staff informed of developments,” Mr. Conway said.
As part of the relocation and refurbishment process, which should take between six and nine months to complete, staff and relatives will also be involved in the selection of furnishings for the new home and choosing its decoration.
“The whole process will be carefully managed and undertaken with minimal disruption. It will also take place in consultation with our colleagues in the Health and Social Care Trusts. While we give thanks for Ard Cluan and York House, which the Church has managed for nearly 50 years, we ask for your prayers at this time as we begin a fresh in the north west,” Mr. Conway said.
In making the announcement he said that residents, their families, staff and the Trusts had been told of the plans. He also thanked the volunteers and local support committees, as they had made an important difference in the lives of many older people through their hard work over many years.
It is hoped that the new residential home in Garvagh will open in the spring of 2017.