These residents need more time

OPEN letter to Dawn Keightley, group director of operations, Four Housing Group

I AM writing to you as chairman of the parish council which is the elected body representing the community of Wooler.

The parish council deplores the way Berwick Borough Housing has treated our most vulnerable residents.

Until last year, you held a Vulnerable Persons Forum at Horsdonside where it states in your literature ‘Berwick Borough Housing is committed to consulting and involving residents in housing issues that affect them’.

Well, you certainly didn’t consult the residents prior to announcing closure.

The speed at which you seem to be getting residents to sign up for Homefinder and actively find alternative accommodation, not necessarily in Wooler, is very disturbing given that these residents are 70 plus, many have lived in or near Wooler all their lives and have family in the town.

They are a close-knit community and are an integral and important part of our community.

Both the Gateway Trust and Doctors Dean and Jamieson have expressed their concern at the way you have mishandled this situation, putting pressure on these and the fact that you have not put any proposals forward for the long-term future of all the elderly residents of Wooler.

It has been suggested that enough time is given, between three and five years, so that the residents of Horsdonside can decide on their future without a tight timescale hanging over them.

Be assured, if you are willing to offer this, the whole community will work towards an acceptable solution which will best suit the needs of our senior citizens both now and in the future.

Alfreda Hindmarsh,

Chairman

Wooler Parish Council