New Owner for Shandford, former Abbeyfield care home Budleigh?

As previously reported, the Shandford Care Home, returned to auction in December and was sold.

Who bought it?

Owl has since received reports from reliable sources that it was purchased by Julie Rhodes of Agency Assistance. However, Owl has been unable to confirm these reports.

Agency Assistance is CQC registered to provide personal care.

From the CQC report (May 2019):

Agency Assistance provides care and support to people living in ‘supported living’ settings, so that they can live as independently as possible. People’s care and housing are provided under separate contractual agreements. CQC does not regulate premises used for supported living; this inspection looked at people’s personal care and support. At the time of our inspection there were 46 people receiving personal care from the service in 20 locations in Exmouth, Exeter, Budleigh Salterton and Bridgewater. Some of these were in shared houses and some in individual homes. People’s ages ranged from 18 to 80 and they were living with a range of needs which included, learning disability, physical disability, mental health, autism, epilepsy and sensory impairment.

To recapitulate the history of Shandford:

Shandford started as a care home in 1958 for local people funded by the people of Budleigh Salterton. In 2012, the trustees ceded it to Abbeyfield.

The closure is based on Abbeyfield’s declared aim of “freeing up assets” as it changes its business model to concentrate on larger homes; and County Councillor Christine Channon’s handpicked adviser, Chris Davis, who claims that Shandford was no longer viable. Owl understands Chris Davis’ report has never been made public.

A local community effort to take back control, failed despite the intervention of newly elected Simon Jupp MP.

During this process Owl received plausible arguments that showed that there were grounds to challenge the case for non-viability.

So will it be used for assisted living rather than fall into the hands of developers?