A FAILING care home is set to close its doors after struggling with financial loses for a number of years.

Popham Court care home, which consists of Popham House and The Court, on Courtland Road, Wellington, will be closing down at the end of November.

The home, which is managed by Somerset Care, had also just received a 'requires improvement' rating from the Care Quality Commission.

The home currently provides care for 53 residents, and says it will be working hard to ensure new locations are found for its residents 'well before' the closure on November 30.

The care company said it will offer staff jobs at our other services in Somerset and support others to find suitable employment.

Dr Jane Townson, chief executive of Somerset Care said: “Closing a care home is absolutely the last resort and is something we never do without long and careful consideration of all possible options. A combination of factors has led to this difficult decision. Nowadays, people typically remain at home for as long as possible and only come into care homes with quite advanced levels of dementia and frailty, so dependency of need is high."

According to Dr Townson, many care homes in the UK are facing the need to upgrade their buildings, which can be more than 50 years old.

She added: "In the UK, 80 per cent of care homes are over 50 years old and many buildings are not fit for purpose. Popham Court is no exception and needs substantial investment in order to meet the needs of our older population in future.

"After seeking expert advice and looking carefully at the market and costs of development, we are unable to make a viable business case to rebuild Popham Court.

"Somerset County Council owns the buildings and the site and, in line with national government policy and demand, does not support the development of additional care home beds. Their goal is to support people to live independently in their own homes and there is an excess of care home beds locally."

The home has also been facing financial difficulty for the last few years. Dr Townson said the loss=making home cannot be sustained as it could risk the whole company's future.

"On top of this, despite strong occupancy, Popham Court has been recording financial losses for a number of years," said Dr Townson.

"This is due to rising costs - particularly National Living Wage, which we welcome for staff but it has to be paid for. Without a corresponding increase in income average fee rates do not cover the costs of care delivery.

"Somerset Care is a not-for-profit company with no shareholders. Any surplus we make is reinvested in the business for the benefit of our customers and staff. Unfortunately, we cannot sustain loss-making services indefinitely as we need to ensure the long term viability of the whole company.

"We are very sorry this decision has been necessary and our goal now is to ensure all residents are safely transferred to their new homes well before the final closure date."