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Lunch club members 'in dark' over cuts
11:00am Thursday 7th March 2013 in News
LUNCH club members have been left confused about possible plans to move them.
Users of the clubs, which run at Broomfields Care Home and Sandy Lane Centre, were left worried about being made to move when told they would have to move somewhere else.
Cyril Leake, an 87-year-old member of both groups, said: “What gets my goat is when things are done in an obtuse way.
“Nobody has put on the table this is what we are going to do and this is when it happens.
“None of the people who have spoken to us seem to have any idea of continuity or thinking when they spell these things out.”
The group were first told by Warrington Borough Council, which provided the service, that paid staff would be withdrawn from helping serve lunches at Broomfields, which hosts up to 18 people on Tuesdays and at Sandy Lane on Thursdays.
“We had been told it was going to be necessary to reduce the staff but it would be okay as we will still have the use of these rooms. We were told we should make efforts to get volunteers to make up the difference,” added Mr Leake, of Broomfield Road.
But he says they were told last month they would have to find a new venue too.
He added: “It has caused a lot of anxiety for some of the users who are worried about the changes.”
A new location has been suggested in Stockton Heath but the kitchen facilities are not as good as the current ones and access for buses used to transport users is restricted.
Any threat to the lunch clubs would prove catastrophic to users.
Mr Leake added: “It’s a real pick up for me.
“They say it’s nice to come here because the others understand what we are talking about and they will get lunch.
“Some people say they see no one else for the rest of the week.”
But the council say the groups do not have to move from the venue.
Mr Leake added: “It looks like no one is quite sure what is happening as we were told we would have to move.”
A council spokesman said: "Council staff have met with volunteers and members of lunch clubs to talk about how best they can be supported going forward in the future. This has included a variety of discussions including the possibility of changing venues however nothing has been agreed and everything is still very much open to suggestion."