Royston care home residents evacuated in flooding could be back by end of week

Mary Barfield House. Picture: Google Street View

Mary Barfield House. Picture: Google Street View - Credit: Google Street View

Elderly residents at a Royston care home could be back in on Friday now that repair work has been completed on its leaking roof, but the daughter of one of the residents still has concerns.

The ceiling at Mary Barfield House in Rochester Way began leaking on May 10, with all the elderly and disabled residents evacuated by staff for their own safety.

All residents were transferred to different care homes and premises outside Royston, and worried families and careworkers weren’t given a date as to when the residents would be allowed back.

Genesis Housing Association – which is responsible for the building – said the reason residents weren’t able to return was due to a potential safety risk in the loft that needed to be remedied.

Roz Wulff, the daughter of 91-year-old Rene Williamson, said she is pleased things have sped up since the Crow covered the story, but still thinks the response from Genesis hasn’t been good enough.

She told the Crow: “I did not think that a month down the line my mum would not be back in her home, it happened on the Wednesday and we we’re initially told she’d be back in the Friday after.

“Apologies don’t help these old people, my mum didn’t have bedsores at Mary Barfield because the care was fantastic, she now has three and still can’t go home.

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“It’s disgusting how these old people have been treated and we want to get them back into their homes. It feels like more hoops to jump through for Genisis, when she shouldn’t have to because there was nothing wrong with her when she was at Mary Barfield – but there is now with the bedsores.”

The building is managed by Genesis Housing Association, which manages thousands of homes in London and the south east.

A Genesis spokeswoman said: “The county fire officer is satisfied with the works that have been carried out at Mary Barfield House and the strategy that is being put in place to ensure resident safety. Genesis is therefore working with Hertfordshire County Council and the care agency on plans for residents to return from June 9, once the council has carried out care reviews.

“We have an action plan for ensuring that the move back runs as smoothly as possible for residents and that they receive ongoing support following what has been a difficult few weeks.

“We would like to apologise to residents and their families for the inconvenience and distress caused, and are looking forward to welcoming them back.”