MORETON Day Centre has been earmarked for closure by council bosses.

The announcement, which was made this morning to service users and their families, comes after a massive campaign to save the borough’s three adult day centres.

The centres were under threat as Wirral Council said one needed to close in order to help save £109m over the next three years.

Now Graham Hodkinson, director of adult social care, has named Moreton as being the “preferred option” to face the axe.

A three-month consultation will now take place with service users and their carers until June 5.

Mr Hodkinson will tell those at Heswall and Eastham centres of the decision later today.

He said: “We know how passionately people feel about their centres, but we have no option but to look at closing one of them.

“Wirral must save £109 million over the next three years. A large proportion of the Council’s budget is spent on social care, particularly for adults. Compared to similar authorities, Wirral’s costs relating to day services are in the top 20%, and our costs per person are in the top 10%. We have to deliver these services more cost effectively.

“The recommendation to close Moreton has been made primarily due to the size and design of the service, and also because it is furtherest away from our desired vision of delivering services for people with disabilities in much smaller settings rather than large day centres.

“The consultation on our preferred option will now continue until June 5. My colleagues and I will continue to meet service users, their carers and staff to get their views, and additionally, will be holding personal reviews aimed at looking at the impacts on staff and individual service users and their families. As part of this we will be presenting alternatives for day services to meet the needs of those potentially affected.

“The findings of this consultation will be reported to cabinet in early June. No closure will take place before this date. 

“I would like to emphasise our concern for the welfare and wellbeing of everyone who uses our services, their families and our own staff, who we know take great pride in their work and need our support.

“We will be working with individual people who use day services to ensure that anyone who needs a service receives it.”