Nascot Lawn: Families granted permission for judicial review

The outside of Nascot Lawn respite centre in Watford. Photo: Danny Loo.

The outside of Nascot Lawn respite centre in Watford. Photo: Danny Loo. - Credit: Archant

Families have been granted permission to challenge the closure of Nascot Lawn in the High Court.

Last Friday, Mr Justice Dove granted permission to the families following the decision by Herts Valleys Clinical Commissioning Group (HVCCG) in November to defund the children’s respite centre.

Mr Justice Dove said: “I am satisfied this claim is properly arguable on all grounds.

“Clearly, for the reasons which have been set out by the claimant, this claim should be expedited for the earliest possible hearing date.

“This case must be heard as soon as possible.”

Parents of the disabled children who attend the Watford centre were shocked in June when HVCCG announced plans to withdraw its £660,000 of funding.

Since then they have fought to keep the service open, and in September HVCCG agreed to continue the funding and to consult further with the affected families.

However in November, HVCCG decided to permanently stop the funding, so the families resumed legal proceedings, as without the money the centre will likely close.

Parent and campaigner Satnam Kaur said: “It goes without saying we are all extremely happy the judge has seen the arguable case and understands the urgency of the case.

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“Most of the Nascot families have now had their only and last one night of respite for January - no others have been scheduled yet.

“The strain we are being placed under is immense.”

Alex Rook, a partner at Irwin Mitchell, representing the families, said: “Families have been left with no alternative but to issue court proceedings once again.

“We would again urge HVCCG to reconsider its decision and enter into constructive dialogue, bringing to an end the anger, frustration and uncertainty families feel. The closure of Nascot Lawn would have a devastating effect on the community.”

Chief executive of HVCCG Kathryn Magson said: “We will, of course, participate fully in this legal process.

“We made our position clear following the funding decision by our finance and performance committee in November 2017 after extensive consultation with families. In light of the legal proceedings we would not want to comment further at this time.”

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