Charity tells MP Lucy Frazer that retirement complex will still close but not until all residents find alternative housing

PUBLISHED: 12:02 07 August 2020 | UPDATED: 12:02 07 August 2020

South Cambridgeshire Liberal Democrats (who visited the home this year) were angry that a  letter had

South Cambridgeshire Liberal Democrats (who visited the home this year) were angry that a letter had "given a week's notice of closure and effective eviction in the midst of a pandemic" and was an "unethical U-turn on a previous assurance". MP Lucy Frazer (right) says she has won assurances on timing,

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MP Lucy Frazer says she has confirmed a retirement housing complex will still close but it won’t be until all residents’ find alternative accommodation.

MP Lucy Frazer says she has won assurances on timing,MP Lucy Frazer says she has won assurances on timing,

The SE Cambs MP says that in recent weeks she had been contacted by the families of residents at Burdett House, a retirement and assisted living facility in Histon run by the charity Abbeyfield.

They were concerned about the planned closure and how this will affect elderly residents.

She said they were also concerned about finding new accommodation “at this difficult time”.

Ms Frazer said: “Having previously liaised with the charity during its consultation on its planned closure, I wrote to the chief executive of Abbeyfield after I was made aware of concerns about recent correspondence residents had received.

South Cambridgeshire Liberal Democrats (who visited the home this year) were angry that a  letter had South Cambridgeshire Liberal Democrats (who visited the home this year) were angry that a letter had "given a week's notice of closure and effective eviction in the midst of a pandemic" and was an "unethical U-turn on a previous assurance".

“I have since spoken with Abbeyfield representatives about this matter. During the discussion and as part of their correspondence they have shared me since, Abbeyfield confirmed that the decision to close Burdett House was made after a lengthy consultation process.”

She said: “Whilst that decision to close the facility remains in place, the charity said that they would not be establishing a new closure date until further time had passed and the impact of the easing of restrictions had been assessed.

“I was pleased to hear that they are working with residents to try and support them into alternative accommodation.”

The MP added: “Whilst I recognise the need to establish a timetable for its closure, it is right that Abbeyfield give residents the time and support they require so that they can find alternative accommodation as safely as possible.”

She said it was also important to support the staff as they seek new employment as a result of the decision to close Burdett House.

Burdett House is part of the main Abbeyfield Society and was opened 22 years ago. It has been home for up to 17 residents and caters for those who want to retain their independence but with a level of care higher than in sheltered housing.

Abbeyfield Society apologised fora letter sent out expressing the desire to close it by June 30. It apologised “wholeheartedly” and said it was “sent in error”.


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