Thursday, 7 January 2016


film movie

Towards the end of 2015 Denbighshire council decided to cut back on the element of housing benefit that relates to Careline, an emergency call service installed in the homes of elderly tenants of Pennaf/Clwyd Alyn and possibly other housing associations.

Clwyd Alyn, despite being one of the biggest sponges of public money in North Wales, rounded on its elderly tenants demanding that they should make up the difference by paying more than £110 a year.

In the ensuing row it came to light that Clwyd Alyn had been charging for Careline even in cases where tenants did not have a telephone landline on which Careline operates and could not access the service.

In the short term Clwyd Alyn should make refunds in respect of those people, and then reorganise its finances so as to avoid twisting the arms of its comparatively poor tenants (off whose backs the company has made a fortune over the years).

In the longer term the value of Careline needs to be re-assessed. Some tenants ignore the service and contact the emergency services directly believing it is quicker to do so - because a delay could be fatal.

Some years ago I collapsed with a painful kidney infection, called Careline and heard a voice at the other end say, "It's Sunday night. Can you wait 'til tomorrow and see your GP?"


Albert Gubay the Rhyl-born entrepreneur and mastermind behind the Kwik Save grocery shops and supermarkets, and Total Fitness keep fit centres, has passed away aged 87:

SAT 8th SEP 2018 UPDATE: Regarding Clwyd Alyn's Careline charges, this week my struggle to have Careline "arrears" removed from my own rent account came to an end successfully thanks to assistance from the Ombudsman for Wales.

My argument with Clwyd Alyn about this matter took nearly two-and-a-half years.
Careline is now an optional service for the tenants that choose to pay for it, instead of being  a compulsory expense for all.