School Closures Tomorrow

Decision on proposals for overnight short breaks will be discussed at Cabinet

Published Thursday, 19th September 2019

Final proposals for changes to the way overnight short breaks are delivered will be discussed at Worcestershire County Council’s Cabinet on the 26th of September.

The proposed changes include improvement works to Osborne Court in Malvern and the closure of a short breaks unit at Ludlow Road in Kidderminster.

Worcestershire County Council has consulted with families, professionals and wider stakeholders on the proposed changes to the way that Worcestershire Health and Care NHS Trust deliver overnight short breaks at Osborne Court and Ludlow Road.

The proposal at the Osborne Court campus, is to create four new bedrooms for children and young people, as well as the refurbishment of two currently empty buildings that will create a unit for adults with five bedrooms.

At Osborne Court, the Council and the Health and Care Trust will continue to provide the unit for children, young people and young adults with challenging behaviours who need support on their own. Osbourne Court has already begun to make this change, with young people currently using this service who have turned 18 years old. The move aims to improve the transition for young people from children’s services to adult services.

The council has responded to the concerns raised throughout the consultation. Issues including travel distances and transport, transitions to alternative units and a lack of services in the north of the county have been addressed in the cabinet report. The proposals will continue to meet the need for overnight short breaks of families now and in the future.  

Councillor Andy Roberts, cabinet member with responsibility for Children and Families said, “We appreciate that overnight short breaks are invaluable to families and that this has been an unsettling period for parents.

“This new way of delivering overnight short breaks is sustainable and has the flexibility to meet the needs of families now and in the future. The County Council and the Health and Care Trust are committed to providing these much needed breaks for families which will continue to be provided to any family who needs it.”

Sue Harris, Director of Strategy and Partnerships at Worcestershire Health and Care and NHS Trust, said “We feel there are real benefits to upgrading what is already a good environment at Osborne Court so more children and young people can experience both the enhanced facilities and a smoother transition into adult services. It is important to reiterate that this proposal would not reduce or take away short breaks services from those currently accessing it.”

As well as the additional bedrooms proposed at Osborne Court, Cabinet approved the use of two additional bedrooms for children and young people at Providence Road short breaks unit in Bromsgrove in July 2018. This additional capacity meets the need of families currently accessing Ludlow Road to continue getting the overnight short breaks they need.

For more information you can visit the short breaks section of the Council's website.