Save Warrington's Allen St Day Centre for Vulnerable Adults

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My name is Laura Howard and I'm writing to you on behalf of my Grandmother, Orford resident, Carol Howard. She is 74 years old and is the carer for my Uncle Peter Howard who has severe Mental Health issues. I've included her letter at the bottom of the page.

As you can imagine this is an extremely demanding role, although one she does with remarkable patience and love. The Warrington Allen Street Day Centre has proved to be an invaluable service for both her and my Uncle. The Centre is one of the very few places that give a sense of safety for my Uncle in a world that, due to his Mental Health issues, is increasingly frightening and unsafe to him.  Since he attended the Centre he has improved greatly something that is a result of the tireless work the staff at the centre do.

I know that they have been told the activities there will still continue for the most part, spread out around the town, but this entirely misses the point of the centre. My Uncle and his friend's aren't worried about missing a few classes on bicycle safety, their worried that one of the few safe spaces in their lives is about to be callously ripped away from them.

We are currently spending an obscene amount of money trying to make Warrington a city of Culture. I ask you what is more important a meaningless title that the majority of the Warrington people don't care about, a vanity project for a council out of touch with it's constituents needs, or a Centre that provides hope and safety to our most vulnerable adults.

Below is a letter written by my 74 year old Grandmother, I have also attached scans of her handwritten and signed letter:

A Letter from a Concerned Mother on the Closure of the Alan Street Centre.

Congratulations to the powers that be who have managed to have a massive negative effect on the lives of some of the most vulnerable people in our town. I refer to the proposed closure in October of our towns Allen St Centre for the help and support of adults with mental health illnesses.

The Centre has long been a key support for my son and many others over a great number of years. It's in a well appointed position near the centre of town. The suggestion is that activities available at the Allen Street Centre can be accessed individually in various locations throughout the town. The Allen Street Centre provides much more than just activities. Clients receive a huge amount of support from staff and other users. Staff understand their need for a friendly, understanding, and supportive environment to help them feel confident enough to take part in the activities on offer. For anyone needing extra support on a one to one basis, this is available daily.

I cannot stress strongly enough how important this is and how important this centre is to the well being of people who are having a difficult enough time without taking away what to them and their families is a hugely important lifeline.

On the decision to close the Centre I wonder how many qualified Mental Health professionals were involved and how many were consulted on the effect this decision would have on clients who rely on the Centre. My guess is non.
For a town that boasts it's support for people suffering from Mental Health illnesses this is an utterly shameful decision.

It is a very bad reflection on a country that is supposed to be championing more help and support for Mental Health services. The decision to close the Allen Street Centre is not supporting Mental Health services. Shame on us if we allow it.

Carol Howard, 74,


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