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Richmond House Liaison with Cranstouns

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Round Hill residents' meeting with Cranstouns 16th June 2015

background | Richmond House | concerns | next steps

Notes taken:

In attendance:

22 Round Hill residents, our local councillor and 4 staff from the new service attended.

Wendy Taylor, Deputy Director of Operations from Cranstouns led the meeting

Background information

  • Cranstouns (a Surrey charity) lead a partnership of organisations that provide a new service which delivers an integrated drug and alcohol service across the city. The partnership includes Oasis, Surrey and Borders NHS Trust, Equinox and YMCA Downslink. Following a bid process decided by B& H Health & Well Being Board (made up of our local clinical commissioning group and BHCC) the partnership began delivering the new service from 1st April 2015 and is called Pavilions. Vast majority of the staff involved delivering the new service were working under the 'old' arrangements and are very experienced. Pavilions have a three year contract with options to extend to five years.
  • The new partnership works with many other organisations and provides a wide range of interrelated services including mental and physical health; partnership with local A&E, maternity and social services; psychological and social interventions including motivational, counselling and group work; volunteers who support drug and alcohol misusers' families, partners and carers, together with health promotion and education work relating to drug and alcohol misuse. They also work with the police, probationary, AA and other fellowship meetings, prison and court services.

Richmond House (RH)

  • Planning permission was granted to Matsims Ltd (owners of Richmond House) earlier this year granting permission to change 25% of the floor area from offices to medical use with view for Pavilions to have tenancy of the whole building. Pavilions plan to deliver their medical and psychological services from Richmond House as well as use the office space. Drugs will be prescribed, with collection from local pharmacies. There will be no needle exchange and no methadone provided at RH. Pavilions' new service does not plan to offer either of these in the future. However as the content of their service is decided by their service commissioners (our local Health and Well Being Board) they cannot guarantee this will remain the case. But they think it is very unlikely. It was stated that new planning permission would be required should such a change be planned. Opening will be Monday - Friday 9-5 with some evening until 9.00pm Saturdays 9.00 - 1.00.
  • Target group of clients is generally those with drug and/or alcohol problems who are motivated to quit, though some will be under court orders to attend. It isn't expected that people will hang around the building and staff will ensure they leave the area. Numbers of clients expected are each day is approximately 12 at each of 2 groups sessions and 10-14 people attending individual appointments, plus Pavilions staff (numbers?). Experience shows that people dealing drugs are not attracted by this type of service.
  • RH was selected as a base for this service because it was a suitably large building, near good public transport links and had potential for successful planning permission. There will be no external changes to RH, but the building will be extensively upgraded externally and internally.
  • Pavilions keen to have ongoing good relationship with RH community, with ongoing dialogue to actively resolve any issues that might arise. They would be very keen to work with a local liaison group. Pavilions will provide names/contact numbers of managers of the service to residents for quick contact should there be problems.
  • There will be CCTV on the outside of the building.
  • Plans in place to open RH in November, with lease due to be signed with Matsims in next 2/3 weeks.
  • Some residents expressed significant concern and worry about the negative impact of users of the new service on the local community. Others were prepared to work cooperatively with the service. It was clear that residents would react very strongly if needle exchange/methadone use was planned or if the service was not well managed.

Concerns - issues identified for Pavilions:

  • Pavilions to provide clarity about numbers visiting RH and staff numbers.
  • The environment immediately around RH (eg gardens) and the look of the building to be of high quality.
  • The potential issue of school children using the 'spiney hill' informal footpath through RH car park interacting with clients
  • Local health promotion for RH young people and residents will be provided.
  • Any smokers area will be carefully located to ensure no overlooking into road or out of the carpark, nor blowing smoke into No 14 back garden.
  • Overlooking and boundary issues with 14 D'Aubigny Rd will be resolved.
  • Pavilions will consider how the service will proactively contribute to the local community (eg meeting rooms and involvement in community events).
  • Clients behaviour on our streets will be managed through an agreed and upheld code of behaviour which will be shared with residents.

Next steps

  • RH committee to write to Health and Well Being board and service commissioner setting out concerns regarding any future changes to service that could involve needle exchange and/or methadone and their responsibility to ensure no negative impact on our community Pavilions will arrange a repeat meeting on a Saturday morning for residents able to make tis meeting - targeted at those with younger children.
  • Another update meeting with residents will be planned for September.
  • An 'open' session will be held at RH when improvements are completed.
  • Pavilions will visit potential 'difficult' areas in Round Hill (eg Cats Creep and Mayo Court car park).
  • Pavilions will ensure residents of Diamond Court and Centenary Industrial Estate are notified and invited to next meetings.

Annie Rimington

17 June 2015

This page was last updated by Ted on 10-Sep-2018
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