Agenda and minutes

Venue: Council Chamber, Wallasey Town Hall. View directions

No. Item



Members of the Council are asked to consider whether they have any disclosable pecuniary interests and/or any other relevant interest, in connection with any matter to be debated or determined at this meeting and, if so, to declare it and state the nature of such interest.



The Members of the Council were invited to consider whether they had any disclosable pecuniary and/or any other relevant interest in connection with any matters to be determined at this meeting and, if so, to declare it and state the nature of such interest.


No such declarations were made.


Procedural matter


It was moved by Councillor B Kenny and duly seconded, that - “Standing Order 9 (meeting guillotine) be applied from 5.30pm.”


The motion was put and carried (35:23) (One abstention).


Resolved – That Standing Order 9 be applied from 5:30pm.


NB.  The following Councillors requested that their objections be recorded:


Councillors T Anderson, B Berry, C Blakeley, E Boult, D Burgess-Joyce, Mrs W Clements, D Elderton, G Ellis, J Green, P Hayes, AC Hodson, K Hodson, I Lewis, L Rennie, L Rowlands, A Sykes, GCJ Watt and S Williams.




To receive the Civic Mayor's announcements and any apologies for absence.



The Civic Mayor noted that apologies had been received from Councillors John Hale, Moira McLaughlin, Tracey Pilgrim, Cherry Povall and Denise Realey.


Apologies for lateness had been received in advance from Councillor Stuart Kelly who arrived after the start of the meeting (5:25pm). Councillor Joe Walsh left the meeting having been taken unwell (5:15pm).




Additional documents:


Proposed by Councillor Chris Blakeley

Seconded by Councillor Bruce Berry


Council notes that its decision to close Girtrell Court was predicated on choice for service users and not a budgetary saving as originally stated.


Council further notes that Labour Councillors voted to close Girtrell Court based on information provided by DASS that stated, of the 105 service users, only 55 service users wanted to continue with bed based respite, and the remaining 50 had chosen other options and venues.


However, in recent weeks, it has become clear that 82 service users wish to transfer from Girtrell Court to the alternative provision in Tollemache Road, with the potential for a further 11 service users, who have currently declined the service, but who we are told remain eligible to move over to the alternative provision, giving a potential total of 93 service users.


Council notes that Girtrell Court is a 20 bed, single floor, bespoke, respite centre, which provides 13 respite beds, 2 emergency beds and 5 placement breakdown beds. The alternative provision will comprise a 10 bed unit over three floors, providing 9 respite beds with 1 bed being available, part of the year, as an emergency bed, with no provision for placement breakdown. 


Council further notes that service users have been informed, in a document provided by Sanctuary Supported Living that some of the respite is subject to short notice cancellation before, or cancellation during, respite. Therefore Council does not believe this alternative is 'equal to or better than' that currently provided at Girtrell Court.


Council now accepts it made the wrong decision, based on incorrect information, when proposing to close Girtrell Court.


Council therefore:


(a)  resolves to apologise to service users for the distress and trauma it has caused them;


(b)  instructs officers to halt the closure programme for Girtrell Court, work with Sanctuary Supported Living to provide and operate a 20 bed facility at Girtrell Court and, invest £1 million capital in the excellent bespoke facility that is Girtrell Court.




One amendment which had been circulated in advance of the meeting was submitted in accordance with Standing Order 12(1) and (9), as follows:


Proposed by Councillor Phil Gilchrist

Seconded by Councillor Alan Brighouse


Insert new para after original paragraph three:


The requests for services at Tollemache Road should be examined in order to determine whether the need for additional periods of respite exceeds the places there. Council needs to establish whether there are unmet needs that are not being accommodated in the range of services developed here and elsewhere.


Insert at end of original paragraph five (ends "…is 'equal or better than' that currently provided at Girtrell Court."):


However, the Council understands that this matter is being addressed through discussions with the new provider.


Delete original para six (begins "Council now accepts it made….") and replace with:


Council now recognises that the original plan to close Girtrell Court during the first half of 2016 was unrealistic.


Council notes that Sanctuary Supported Living issued a ‘Communications  ...  view the full minutes text for item 131.