Category: Shropshire

From the Shropshire Star. 16th September 2010

Blog:Life seems to be going on as normal in Shropshire despite the massive savings (or do we say cuts?) Shirehall bosses plan to make.

For example, from my office window I can see cars queuing to get on to a supermarket car park and early today the roads were heavy with traffic, lorries transporting goods and countless cars speeding people to work.

Sauntering along the town pavements were large numbers of secondary school pupils, chatting and laughing with, it would appear, hardly a care in the world.

Nothing seems different.

But a council can’t find savings of nearly £60 million over three years without something changing and someone being hurt.

This hit home at a meeting of the Shropshire Council cabinet which was considering a list of budget ideas of next year.

About £200,000 could be saved by closing the Grange day centre in Shrewsbury…..

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From the Shropshire Star. 17th August 2010.

Shropshire mental health hospital ward faces closure

Shropshire mental health hospital ward faces closure

“A Shropshire hospital ward catering for elderly people with mental illnesses and dementia has been earmarked for closure with the loss of 16 specialist beds, it emerged today.

The Beech Ward at Whitchurch Community Hospital is facing the axe in a shake-up of the county’s mental health provision.

Health bosses are looking to make the services more “modern”, but said today that the proposal to close the ward would be subject to a public consultation.

As part of the proposals, the number of community health workers would increase, which bosses say would reduce the need for inpatient mental health beds at the hospital, paving the way for the ward to close.

Staff working there would be offered the chance to retrain as community mental health staff.


The remaining 32 beds at the Claypit Street hospital will remain open and will be unaffected by the changes.

The decision has been taken by health chiefs at Shropshire Primary Care Trust, which runs the hospital, and South Staffordshire and Shropshire Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust, which runs mental health services on the ward.

In a joint statement the PCT and foundation trust said today: “This ward does not offer long-term mental health hospital care.”

The statement added that they wanted “to increase the teams of community mental health staff — which is reflective of a modern mental health service”.

It said: “These teams would also include more intensive help for older people suffering from dementia.

“As the teams are put in place and the need for inpatient beds at Whitchurch are no longer required, the situation would be reviewed and this may mean that the ward could be phased out.”

Bosses added the plans would see 90 additional staff working across the county.

But health campaigners have criticised the move.

Margaret Hiles, chairman of the Whitchurch Hospital League of Friends, said the decision was “dreadful”.

She added: “I should be very sorry to see Beech Ward closed, it’s full all the time. So many people depend on that ward.”

North Shropshire MP Owen Paterson said he was “surprised” at the move.”

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