Concerned members of the community try to save Shandford Care Home, Budleigh.

Should ‘all possible steps’ be taken to save the Budleigh Salterton care home set to close next month?

Families of residents at Abbeyfield Shandford and concerned members of the Budleigh community are set to ask whether there is support for creating a community interest company to run the home.

A public drop-in event has been organised to discuss the idea on Friday (February 14) at Budleigh Salterton Football Club between 4pm and 6.30pm.

The Abbeyfield Society last month confirmed its decision to close the home on March 1 due to the spiralling cost of maintaining the building and difficulty attracting new staff.

A panel of local people had been put together to investigate transferring the home to trustee management but they decided ‘reluctantly’ it was not viable.

Following a meeting at the home called by East Devon MP Simon Jupp, those campaigning for the home to stay open say there is a ‘clear consensus’ that Shandford should be saved.

Mr Jupp said: “At the end of last week I met with the relatives of residents at Abbeyfield Shandford to hear their concerns and discuss next steps.

“I will be meeting with management from Abbeyfield later this week to raise questions on behalf of the residents and their relatives.

“I am still concerned about the lack of clear communication from the charity and questions remain over the amount of money left by former residents.

“I will be updating family members next week and hope to get the answers they need.

“Relatives of residents have said to me that they would like more time to consider other options for its future before residents are forced to move elsewhere.”

Owl will be trying to follow future developments in this story closely. First out of concern for the vulnerable and elderly residents and their families facing a traumatic move to who knows where. Second because East Devon has no recent experience of a constituency MP taking any active interest in the problems of his constituents. New MP, Simon Jupp, has decided to become involved and this will be the first test of his resolve. Owl can only hope that this is more than just a PR exercise.