§ Mr. Tilley
asked the Secretary of State for Social Services how many local authority residential centres for the care of the mentally ill have been closed since May 1979.
§ Sir George Young
Information about the actual number of local authority residential homes for the mentally ill which have been closed over a period is not maintained centrally, and could be obtained only at disproportionate cost, but we have information showing the number open on 31 March each year. Analysed statistical returns from local authorities for the years ending 31 March 1979 and 1980 show that there was a national net reduction of two local authority staffed homes—from 139 to 137—available for the mentally ill over the year; and that there was a national net increase of 26 local authority available unstaffed homes—from 278 to 304. This resulted in a 5 per cent. increase in residents overall.