Protesters gather against Doncaster council cuts

Protesters outside Plantation View, Cantley about the closures. Picture: Andrew Roe
Protesters outside Plantation View, Cantley about the closures. Picture: Andrew Roe

Campaigners turned out in force to two separate protests against swingeing cuts to Doncaster Council services.

The local authority has announced that massive budget savings need to be made - which could lead to the closure of residential care homes and libraries, and huge jobs losses.

In Askern, residents gathered against the plans at Askarne Day Centre, adorning the walls and fences with protest banners.

Organiser Elaine Capon said: “Local residents are pretty much up in arms.”

The Doncaster People’s Assembly also gathered outside Plantation Care Home in Cantley, which faces an uncertain future.

Sheila Rogers, of Balby, whose 89-year-old mum Joan Brown is a resident in the home, said: “Dementia patients need routine. We are really happy with the care, and the staff, here. It will be detrimental to her health if they move her.”

Cantley resident Catherine Grocock used to work at the home before retirement, and added: “I’m disgusted with all these cuts. Socialism is all about caring yet they are evicting the old. I know the effect it will have on them. These people need advocates because they can’t speak for themselves.”

Campaign leader Mick Wattam said: “The most vulnerable people in our communities are paying for the council’s financial crisis.”

Pine Road resident Margaret Kitchen feared the home’s closure would be the deathknell for some residents.

She said her father, Arthur Hicking, 88, had been in Plantation Care Home for four years. “My dad has dementia. This place is familiar to him. It would kill him to move.”

Doncaster councillor Pat Knight said: “We will hold meetings at all our care homes. These will be attended by senior managers who will share information and listen to the views of residents and their relatives. We can discuss the specific implications of the proposal and how individual circumstances can be addressed, should the closures go ahead.”