It is with deep sadness that Pilgrims’ Friend Society is to close Bethany Christian Care Home in Plymouth.
While the care and community at the home remains strong and safe, the costs of maintaining the viability of the building have become unaffordable. The implementation of tighter fire regulations in recent years alongside the deterioration of the structure of the external metal staircase means that the costs of repairs, together with the cost of employing fire wardens, exceed the financial viability of the home.
The building remains safe in the immediate term with fire wardens employed in order to ensure the safety of those who live and work at the home.
Stephen Hammersley, Chief Executive of Pilgrims’ Friend Society, said: “Bethany has been a cherished part of the Pilgrims’ Friend Society family for 12 years and we are very sorry that we have had to make this decision, forced by the insurmountable costs of ensuring the long-term safety of the building. The care and community at this home has been a gift to so many and we have been privileged to serve older people of Plymouth in this way.”
Maureen Sim, Director of Operations at Pilgrims’ Friend Society said: “The care and well-being of those who live and work with us remains our highest priority and we are no longer able to guarantee that for the long term. We recognise that this will come as something of a shock to the many people who care about this community. We are currently supporting those who live with us and the staff team in processing this news and consulting about future living and working arrangements. We hope to help as many as possible to find alternative homes and roles within the Plymouth area or within other Pilgrims’ Friend Society homes.”
Since Pilgrims’ Friend Society took over the running of the home in 2011, every effort has been made to maintain the viability of the building with a new roof, lift and indoor garden being installed. The building remained a useful and pleasant home for several years longer than had been anticipated when taken on by the Society and we are glad to have been able to ensure that the community here has thrived for as long as it has.
Please do pray with us for all those involved in the home as they come to terms with this news and as they make plans for the future.
Update as of 30th October 2023:
We are pleased that we have had an approach that might allow Bethany to keep operating. We are progressing this as urgently as we can in line with the provisions of the Charity Act and we have extended the period of notice for any planned closure while this approach is considered. We are focussing on supporting all involved with Bethany and keeping them informed of developments.