SNP Minister for Older People supports care home closure in own constituency

Despite becoming the Scottish Government’s Minister for Older People Christina McKelvie has refused to condemn SNP plans to close the only council run care home in her constituency town of Larkhall.

WcWhirter House is closing down

SNP and Tory councillors voted to close McWhirter House in Larkhall

The plan to close two care homes, McWhirter House in Larkhall and Kirkton House in Blantyre, was approved by SNP and Tory councillors last month prompting Monica Lennon, Labour MSP for Central Scotland – who lives in the Hamilton, Larkhall and Stonehouse constituency – to write to McKelvie asking whether she would stand up for her constituents and oppose the closure. 

Christina McKelvie

Christina Mckelvie refused to condemn care home closure in Larkhall

Although McKelvie is yet to respond to Monica Lennon’s letter she did speak to the Hamilton Advertiser, albeit through a spokesperson, offering her support for the SNP council’s policy which will result in the end of council run care provision for the elderly in Larkhall.

The council plans to close the two care homes and replace them with a new facility in Blantyre which will have twenty transitional rooms and “twenty technology enabled homes which support adults with complex needs and older people to live independently”.

However, critics have pointed out that the closure of the two care homes will result in the loss of sixty residential places. 

When the scheme was piloted, according to the report to the Social Work Committee that made the decision, 54% of elderly people were able to continue living at home. However, that would result in a shortfall in provision as it would leave 27 of the current residents requiring residential care when only twenty places exist. As the new places will also need to accommodate “adults with complex needs” there will be even less for elderly making the problem even worse.

Monica Lennon campaigning against closure of McWhirter House

Monica Lennon campaigning against the closure of McWhirter House in Larkhall

Monica Lennon also highlighted that the Scottish Government has reduced council budgets by £744 million in the last five years, which is four times the reduction in the Scottish Government’s own budget, therefore passing on and exacerbating Tory austerity to local councils.

You can sign the petition against the care home closure at


Posted by HLSLabour


Christine Smith

I work in a care home and I have done careing wirk for over 20yrs we need to keep them open si many people depend on them

Hazel mckinnie

Speak up for our elderly

[…] Scotland MSP Monica Lennon has also written to Larkhall’s local MSP, and Minister for Older People, Christina McKelvie who has so far has only offered support for the […]

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