Star date: 20th November 2018


After years of campaigning and protests, The Grange home for children with severe complex needs finally shut yesterday, after the last resident was shunted out of the city.

"Salford Council should be ashamed of themselves for getting rid of such a valuable facility" says Rebecca Howarth, parent and Save The Grange Again campaigner "We have fought the Council for nearly two years in a bid to keep the care home open but unfortunately we have reached the end of the road."

Full details here...

Save The Grange Save The Grange Save The Grange
Save The Grange Save The Grange Save The Grange
Save The Grange Save The Grange Save The Grange
Save The Grange Save The Grange
click image to enlarge

After a five year battle to save The Grange, the residential home for children with severe complex needs finally closed yesterday after the last child was placed in a facility outside of Salford.

The community originally launched a bitter battle to Save The Grange as a short term respite centre for children in 2013, with Salford Council arguing in a report that the facilities were "not value for money".

The campaign turned nasty after the then Mayor, Ian Stewart, rounded on the protesting parents of the children and their supporters, calling them 'rent-a-crowd' – in an official press statement! He added that they "do not set a good example for our young people"...

Insulted parents upped the protests as a result, but the Council ignored pleas to keep it open and, instead, changed The Grange use from a short term respite centre to a residential facility for children with very complex needs, arguing that it "would reduce the need to place children outside of the city, improve their life experiences and will save on the cost of more expensive out of borough residential placements"...

Almost two years ago, under a new, more 'Corbynista' Mayor, Paul Dennett, it was proposed to close The Grange completely to save £300,000 and move the young people to 'expensive out of borough residential placements'...

A new Save The Grange Again campaign sprung up, launched by disgusted parents, and three thousand people signed a petition opposing the move. At the meeting when Dennett made The Grange closure decision, there were shouts of 'Traitor' and 'Shame' from the public gallery.

Salford UNISON slated the Council which, it stated, had "a duty of care to those children and families currently being accommodated, rather than treating them as collateral damage..."

Now, after more campaigning and even the hope of a judicial review of the decision, the last child has been moved out of The Grange and the facility, Salford's last remaining residential care home for severely disabled children and those with complex needs, has closed its doors for good.

"We have fought the Council for nearly two years in a bid to keep the care home open but unfortunately we have reached the end of the road" says parent Rebecca Howarth, spokesperson for the Save The Grange Again Campaign.

"All of our efforts have failed to make the Council change their mind about this wonderful facility, that over the years has helped countless families, including our own" she adds "We cannot speak highly enough of the fantastic staff who have stood by us and our daughter through the good times and the not so good times. They will be sorely missed, but we wish them well in the next step on their journey. We would also like to thank all of our other supporters for standing with us during this battle, we wouldn't have gotten this far without you.

"Salford Council should be ashamed of themselves for getting rid of such a valuable facility and forcing any families who end up needing the support of a place like The Grange to have to place their vulnerable young people outside of the city" she concludes "I hope that this decision does not come back to bite them."

Update: 1:30pm: Salford City UNISON's Ameen Hadi has just provided a comment...

"UNISON is concerned that the final closure of The Grange means that there is no residential care provision for children with disabilities in Salford, with the loss of a dedicated and experienced workforce.

"Our members are extremely disappointed by the unnecessary closure of a fantastic resource for the people of Salford" he adds "All children with disabilities needing residential care will be placed in the private sector. This is a mistake for children, families, staff and the people of Salford. Our union will continue our fight against privatisation."

For a full background see previous Salford Star articles...

Disabled Children 'Collateral Damage' of Salford Labour Council Cuts – click here

Salford Council Puts Street Cleaning Before Disabled Children – click here

Families Fight To Save Salford's Only Disabled Children's Home – click here

Salford Mayor Faces May Day Protest Against Disabled Children Home Closure – click here

Salford Council To Shut The Grange – click here

Salford Mayor Insults 'Rent-a-Crowd' Disabled Children's Parents – click here

Salford Mayor Disgrace – click here

Bobs my uncle wrote
at 18:51:18 on 28 November 2018
 Rayofsunshine, some disabled people especially children are powerless. This was a centre that gave respite to parents who live the same day, day after day, people who just ask to spend just a few hours just to recharge their batteries, spending a little looking after themselves, safe in the knowledge that the people they love are with people who care about the children and the parents. This centre also brought together parents who are going through the same day to day problems only they could know about and give support to one another and now Salford Labour council have washed their hands of them, they look at them as a problem, they’re not a problem. The only problem in this story is the problem of Salford people who keep voting labour, they vote for their own demise. Salford Labour Party won’t be happy till they’ve eradicated Salford people from Salford.
Rayofsunshine wrote
at 14:58:30 on 27 November 2018
Bobs my uncle,to be frank,The Grange shouĺd have been "nuķed" a long time ago! It's existence was premised on the sick idea that the disabled should be kept apart from everyday society! By and large,the so-called "campaign" to save The Grange adobted a patronising attitude - the disabled were portrayed as powerless "victims"! The disabled want options,not pitty!
Bobs my uncle wrote
at 21:21:47 on 26 November 2018
Rayofsunshine, if Salford Labour council can keep floging a dead horse by throwing £600.000 + a year at the Salford Reds, then keeping a valued center the grange open to give much needed help to parents and children is more important, community first, vanity project last, Ray the numbers went down because of this labour council’s actions. Labour the party of the people, then it goes and kicks the most vulnerable in Salford in to the gutter. Keep voting labour
Rayofsunshine wrote
at 19:26:32 on 26 November 2018
Bob's my uncle, given the fact that The Grange only caters for so few customers,is it the best use of scarce resources to keep it open?? Disabled Salfordians deserve educatiòñ,trainiñg and therapy- not "glorified child minding"!
Bobs my uncle wrote
at 09:15:10 on 26 November 2018
@salford star, it’s about the article. Rayofsunshine keeps bleating on about Tory cut backs, when the truth is it’s this labour council’s cut backs that has closed the grange, salford labour council has the money but chooses to spend it on vanity and white elephants instead. On glass steagle, just informing rayofsunshine of the facts the 2008 crash was caused by tony Blair and Labour, Tories weren’t in power in 2008
Salford Star wrote
at 16:25:15 on 25 November 2018
See Mr Brexit and Ray of Sunshine comments below...What has all this got to do with the article? Any more of this will not be posted. Go find Facebook
Mr brexit wrote
at 16:22:57 on 25 November 2018
Rayofsunshine, facts,look it up. And are you trying to tell me that corbyn isn’t for Brexit, corbyn, bob crow, Michael foot, Tony Ben all anti European Union, corbyn knows he can’t implement any of his left wing polices whilst we remain a member of the political European Union. All countries in European Union that have the euro as there currency have to have there finances ok’d by Brussels and in particular by merkle and the German government. The truth’s a bitch, is it not, ask the Greeks or the Italians. If Brussels don’t rule us British or our laws, and our polititions, then why is it so hard to get out, not sending a message to the Greeks, Italians, Spanish, poles etc etc European Union the embodiment of democracy “not”
Rayofsunshine wrote
at 16:22:34 on 25 November 2018
Another thing,Mr Brexìt,is that the Tory Right,Borris Johnstone,Rees Mogg,et all see Brexìt as a means of turning Britain into one giant sweatshop! Other Brexìt Tossers have never come terms with the fact that The Empire no longer exists - they yearn for an age when Britain "waived the rules!" The irony being that Brexìt will hasten our decline to a foùrth rate basket case !
Rayofsunshine wrote
at 11:24:22 on 25 November 2018
Mr.Brexit,what a load of baonèy! The fact of the matter is thàt Brexìt sets the scene for a massive attack on Working Class Living Standards - welcome to The Thatcherite Counter Revolution Part 2!
Mr brexit wrote
at 06:57:38 on 25 November 2018
@rayof sunshine. … The Glass-Steagall Act of 1933 barred commercial banks and their affiliates from underwriting and dealing in securities activities, amidst concerns that banks abused the trust of their depositors and clientele by systematically underwriting poor quality security issues … in I believe 1995, the then president of the USA bill clinton removed this act as one of the payments for the financial backing of his presidential campaign from his Wall Street friends in the city, this act was brought in after the 1929 Wall Street crash, to separate the financial side from the normal day to day banking side. as I say, bill clinton got rid of glass steagall, so creating a free for all. In 1997 bill clintons mate tony Blair came to power and within a couple of years tony Blair with the help of his chancellor Gordon brown also repealed this act, this was the beginning of the 2008 financial crash, British banks were allowed by Gordon brown to speculate all of the banks money and assets, where as before they could only speculate the financial side of the bank and not the public side, savings and mortgages, as they did. Tony Blair and Gordon brown were made aware of this a number of years before the 2008 crash, but chose to Ignore the sound advice they were being given about what the banks were getting up to and as they say, the rest is history. So as the above reveals the 2008 crash/austerity was started by labour and not the tories. And as for austerity in Britain, this would have been forced on us any way as we are members of the European Union, don’t believe me, look at Greece, Spain and now Italy, italy have just set there own budget and the European Union are threatening sanctions against them. To all the Corbin and Labour supporters, you believe if Corbin gets elected austerity will end and go on a spending spree, it won’t happen, he,s tied by the same rules as the rest of Europe, the European Union set the rules on countries finances, Corbin knows this, this is why he has been a life long brexiteer, he knows he can’t go on a public sector spending spree whilst we’re still a member of the European Union...... brexit means freedom.
Rayofsunshine wrote
at 19:07:54 on 21 November 2018
Cody,point taken but there is a legitimate debate to be had over whether keeping The Grange open is the best use of scarce resources? For example,in Its last year,how many clients did The Grange handle? Perhaps resources should be moved to specialised Education,Training or Occupational Therapy? Being against cuts is easy - the hard stuff is coming up with a practical alternative! Banging on about waste or alleged "dodgy loans" is plain intellectually dishonesty! "To govern, is to choose".
Bob the regular wrote
at 19:07:38 on 21 November 2018
Just been thinking, why do our Tory councilors ,never ever write comments in this journal? To the Tories in our city it must be wonderful news each time they read the stories here of cock up after cock up by Dennett and his mob. There are countless thousands of dissidents who gleefully read story after story of Labours misfortunes here. Could it be possible to get a few of these to vote Tory? Not me, not people like Cody and a few others but some souls might be persuaded. Areas like Walkden South, perhaps Claremont. Only take a few voters for a Tory win. This is what I suspect. I suspect the Tories have an understanding with Labour. They get what they want in their areas, like Worsley, and they turn a blind eye to the mischief labour get up to elsewhere. Like many have said here before, the council never do anything that upsets the residents of Worsley do they? Think about it.
Cody wrote
at 05:13:42 on 21 November 2018
Rayofsunshine - Please don't confuse my legitimate criticism of Salford Labour and their blind ideological adherents as passive support for the Tories and their cuts. Just because I criticise your party it doesn't mean I'm automatically a Tory. I have never voted Tory and nor do I support the vast majority of their policies, therefore I am not responsible for cuts. You on the other hand, I would assume, have consistently voted Labour. Which means you must be fine with how Salford Labour is doing, how the money is being spent along with the housing policy etc? It is your fault directly for giving them the green light to carry on doing what they're doing by consistently voting for them. It's Labour voters collective fault the Council put's developers before the needs of Salfordians; it's voters fault social housing is being knocked down and being replaced with expensive new properties and it's voters fault the Council thinks it's alright to close The Grange, which was an essential community resource, and spend millions elsewhere. And before you blame it on the Tories this has nothing to do with them, Salford Labour borrowed that money, so if they borrowed all that money to waste on projects that weren't warranted, then they could've spent some on The Grange.
Retired Socailst wrote
at 19:54:27 on 20 November 2018
Plenty of money to waste on crap,nothing left for essential statutory duties Bob hits the Nail on the head. It's funny really lets take crackpots like ray out of the equation and look at what a wasteful shower of bastards they really are, from their fixation with failed rugby in Salford, Propaganda under the guise of Salford life, Paying thousands out to conmen, what did Billy hinds say? we where fooled that's easy with idiots. Ripped off waste bags to electric wheel chairs going out the back door, ice rinks the list is endless, Ray groans on about austerity for Christ sake the mans and idiot even if they had the money it would be more for them to waste. We need opposition ,opposition willing to hold them to account that's where this city fails it dug it's own mess voting Labour like fucking sheep
Rayofsunshine wrote
at 19:53:39 on 20 November 2018
Cody,people who offer poĺitiçal succor for The Toriès,like yourself,are ùltimately responsìble for cuts !
Bob the regular wrote
at 19:53:29 on 20 November 2018
Of course we have a bit of austerity, the Tories had to impose that on the people to remind the people that it was the peoples fault that Tory bankers made a complete balls of the country's finances. And the people are so stupid that they all voted Tory in 3 elections, so the gullable public seem to have swallowed that one. The British public seem to like Tory austerity, I don't. But if we have all this austerity, then why do we have to waste the money we do have on things that are not essential like Cody and Kenny point out? Both Dennett and Merry have never had proper jobs before politics,Merry was a toy shop manager for a bit, and I think Dennett was a lecturer for about 6 months. They have not got a clue of the real world.
Kenny wrote
at 17:41:43 on 20 November 2018
They can lend or give millions to a rugby club but cannot help Children. They can also donate millions to other unworthy causes they the general public will never use or see.
Cody wrote
at 17:41:29 on 20 November 2018
They borrowed millions for Greengate, New Baily, Manchester airport and RHS Bridgewater, but not for this essential service? To those people who always go out and vote Labour regardless, this is your fault!
Rayofsunshine wrote
at 17:41:11 on 20 November 2018
Bob the regular, why don't you mention eight years of Tory imposed austerity? Is it an oversight or are you showing your "True Blue" affiliations?
Bob the regular wrote
at 13:39:15 on 20 November 2018
Plenty of money to waste on crap,nothing left for essential statutory duties. Well this is what you all voted for. This is what you get. Total XXXXXXX numbties.
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