New care centre in Blackpool

A £1.75m facility is to be developed in Blackpool to care for adults with complex learning disabilities.

The six-bedroom residential centre has got the go ahead after a successful bid was made for capital funding from the NHS.

It will help meet increased demand for respite care for young adults with learning difficulties and autism who would otherwise have to be looked after at a higher cost out of the area.

The council-owned former Colton House on Ambleside Road at Mereside will be redeveloped to provide the new facilities.

A council report says: “At present, there is not enough respite provision in Blackpool to support those carers and families who play a pivotal role in the day-to-day care of individuals with a learning disability and, or, autism. ”

The council already operates a similar six-bedroom unit at Coopers Way in North Shore which offers 2,160 bed nights per year but demand from families exceeds this by approximately 900 bed nights per year.

The report adds demand for beds is expected to increase.

Annual running costs of £665,000 a year will be met by the council’s Adult Services budget, with the council also contributing £150,000 by way of the value of the site.

Without respite care, it is feared pressure on social services would increase as families would be more likely to plunge into crisis.

The report says: “The breakdown of an informal caring arrangement can also have financial consequences in terms of the need for a high cost residential or hospital placement, either in-borough or out-of–area.”

The new service will offer planned breaks for families, crisis support and somewhere for people to stay between leaving hospital and being able to go home.

Colton House was previously used as three flats providing supported living accommodation for people with learning difficulties.

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