AN ANDOVER care home will remain closed until the autumn, the county council has confirmed in response to calls for a decision on its future.

As previously reported, Hampshire County Council took the decision to temporarily close Copper Beeches care home in Woodlands Way last year.

Borough councillor Iris Andersen spoke out in March, asking for answers on the future of the site, which she believes has “potential”, even if not for the same purpose it served before. 

The county council said that discussions were “ongoing”, but that steps taken to manage the unoccupied building - such as shutting off water supply and redirecting mail - ”should not be taken as a precursor to permanent closure”.

READ MORE: Councillor calls for answers on future of care home which lies ‘dormant’

Now, with no update offered since, Cllr Andersen has renewed her calls for action to be taken to ensure the building is not being wasted.

She said: “They haven't told us anything! It’s a good area, a nice setting, what is happening with it?

“I am not against them. I just want them to tell the public what is going to happen. The people of Andover have a right to know this. 

“If it’s not going to be used for older people, it could become a young person’s hub or affordable accommodation!”

In response, Cllr Liz Fairhurst, Hampshire County Council's executive member for adult services and public health, said: "Following a detailed review of the current recruitment position across our care home network and the ongoing and significant challenges we continue to face in this regard, the decision has been taken that the home will remain closed until the autumn. 

“Our staff have been advised and we are contacting any families, carers and other parties who have maintained an interest in the home to ensure they are kept abreast of developments.”

Cllr Fairhurst continued: "As we explained last year, it is important to emphasise that this does not signal a permanent closure. We will continue to review how we respond to staffing pressures and over the coming months, will be considering how best to use all our available homes to care for Hampshire residents."

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