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'Have we just been dumped there?' Council hears fears over Hunstanton hostel

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Serious concerns have been raised about conditions for residents living at a homeless hostel in Hunstanton.

Councillors were this week told that a number of residents at the Park Road site have died in recent years, as several other issues, including months without permanent management, were also reported.

But the organisation which runs the site yesterday insisted that “planned improvement work” to the property is currently taking place.

The issues were raised during a meeting at Hunstanton's town hall.
The issues were raised during a meeting at Hunstanton's town hall.

The conditions were raised by a resident of the hostel during a session for public questions at the latest meeting of Hunstanton’s town council on Wednesday evening.

He initially asked if members were aware of the issues in the building and claimed it had been without permanent management since last December.

The resident, who said he had been living there for six months, warned of exposed woodwork posing a fire safety risk and alleged residents had been left without proper cooking facilities for several days during recent refurbishments.

He asked: “Have we just been dumped there? Is anyone going to step in?”

The meeting was also told there had been several deaths at the facility in recent years.

Allegations about the circumstances of one death in the hostel have also been made in an online review which the Lynn News has seen, though officials say the fatalities which did occur were due to natural causes.

The resident added that the conditions in the hostel were beginning to have an impact on his mental health, but claimed that county adult social services officials had declined to intervene when he raised his concerns with them.

Town clerk Jan Roomes said the issues had also been raised with local police officers and she would keep members updated of any further developments.

Andrew Jamieson, who is a member of Norfolk County Council’s cabinet in addition to his town council duties, also asked to speak to the resident after the meeting about the issues raised.

The session was told that the facility is run by Sanctuary Supported Living, which also oversees the Merchants Terrace facility in Lynn, which provides accommodation and support for people with drug and alcohol issues, and around 300 other sites nationally.

A spokesman for Sanctuary told the Lynn News yesterday: “A programme of planned improvement work is currently being carried out at this property and we can also confirm that cover has been in place to manage the scheme at all times.”

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