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Gov buys £1m home amid complex disability service restructuring

Gov buys £1m home amid complex disability service restructuring

Tuesday 28 September 2021

Gov buys £1m home amid complex disability service restructuring

The Government has purchased a £995,000 St. Saviour bungalow to house an islander with learning disabilities as part of a wider restructuring of its specialist care facilities.

Previously, individuals “with learning disabilities who have the most complex needs and are in crisis” lived at Aviemore, a five-unit specialist accommodation facility operated by the Special Needs Service neighbouring Haut de la Garenne in St. Martin.

Following concerns that the facility was no longer fit for purpose, it is now in the process of being decommissioned, and a replacement set up.

Meanwhile, the Government has purchased Klondyke in St. Saviour to provide bespoke accommodation for one Aviemore resident.

In 2019, Express learned that Aviemore was issued with three orders by the Health and Safety Inspectorate relating to a substantial lack of written policy or procedure in protecting employees from "violent or aggressive incidents" from clients.

The following year, it was acknowledged in the Government Plan that the facility itself was proving a barrier against providing “appropriate and safe care, as well as providing a safe working environment for the staff.”

The Plan, which budgeted £9.3m for updating the available specialist accommodation for islanders with learning disabilities, noted: “The nature of the existing building means it cannot be fully occupied and private sector accommodation must be sought to meet the needs of individuals. 

“The replacement facility will allow the service to be provided in an appropriate and safe environment, in line with the Regulation of Care Law 2014, and give a cost saving through the reduction in the use of private sector accommodation.”

Rosewood House, which forms part of the St. Saviour mental health estate, is now a frontrunner for the relocation of Aviemore.

There had been concerns about finding a replacement “lifetime home” for one user, with Isabel Watson, Associate Managing Director of the Mental Health Service, lamenting in May that there were “pressures to try and find the correct property because… the property market is quite buoyant and properties are being snapped up.”

However, Klondyke was identified as suitable, and the contract passed in the Royal Court in late July.

Work is now ongoing to adapt the property. 

A Government spokesperson said: “As part of a wider project, Klondyke will provide bespoke living accommodation for a Learning Disabilities Service user.

“This has been funded through the Decommissioning and relocation of Aviemore House. Health and Community Services Estates are currently working on plans to make the environment suitable for our service user.”

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