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Last remaining care home resident to be rehoused

6 October 2008

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The last remaining resident at an old people’s home, whose care has cost the local council £7,400 a week, is to be moved to new accommodation following a court ruling.

A total of 19 staff at Parkview care home in Thornaby, near Stockton-on-Tees, have been caring for 101-year-old Sarah Rutter for three months while family members argued over her future.

All of Parkview’s other residents were moved after Stockton Borough Council announced plans to turn the site into housing units for the elderly.

However, Mrs Rutter’s granddaughter, Christine Wardell, obtained a High Court injunction preventing her removal – and effectively blocking closure of the home – pending the hearing of a claim that she should be allowed to remain there for the rest of her life.

At the hearing in London, Mr Justice Wilkie rejected the claim, but granted a further injunction pending an application by Mrs Wardell’s lawyers to the Court of Appeal for permission to challenge his ruling.

He said the cost of maintaining Mrs Rutter at her present facility was “very substantial, bearing in mind the financial stringency applying to local authorities”.

But there was no evidence that Stockton Council had sought to “railroad through” its proposals without proper consideration of Mrs Rutter’s well-being, he added.

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