BALLYMONEY Borough Council has expressed grave concern over the proposed closure of the Roddens Residential Home.

During a recent Council meeting, members praised the facility and voted to invite Mr Sean Donaghy, Chief Executive of Northern Health and Social Care Trust, to discuss the home’s future.

The issue was raised following news that a letter had been sent by The Friends of the Roddens to Mr Donaghy and the Health Minister, Mr Edwin Poots, MLA expressing alarm that the facility would be axed under a new proposed overhaul of Health Services.

The correspondence explained: ‘The Friends of the Roddens, Ballymoney, have forwarded a copy of a letter to Mr Sean Donaghy, Chief Executive of Northern Health and Social Care Trust and the Health Minister, Mr Edwin Poots, MLA, expressing alarm at sections of the Minister’s Health Policy statement on 9 October, in particular that the Roddens, state-run residential home, a long established facility and an invaluable element of the very fabric of society, will be axed under the Minister’s proposed overhaul of the Health Service.

‘The Friends of the Roddens strongly oppose all proposals and endeavours to redefine the status of the Roddens Residential Home and have sought assurances from the Chief Executive of the Trust and the Minister that their fears and suspicions are unfounded and they will as a matter of urgency, allay those fears at the earliest possible opportunity by communicating, clearly, their intentions for the future of the Roddens to remain in its present and dedicated role, as a residential home primarily for the benefit of the long-term care of the elderly citizens of the town and borough of Ballymoney.’

Responding Mayor of the Borough, Cllr Evelyne Robinson praised the Roddens stating: “Over the festive season I visited local residential homes throughout the town and was extremely impressed with what I saw. The Roddens is an asset to this borough and should remain.”

Cllr John Finlay concurred with the comments and proposed to invite Mr Donaghy to come to Council which Cllr Ian Stevenson seconded his proposal.