Temporary reprieve for war hero locked in care funding row with Brent Council

Robert Clark is an ex-prisoner of war (Pic credit: Jan Nevill)

Robert Clark is an ex-prisoner of war (Pic credit: Jan Nevill) - Credit: Archant

A war veteran who faces being forced into a care home because of a funding row with Brent Council has been given a temporary reprieve by a charity and a fundraiser.

Robert Clark in 1940

Robert Clark in 1940 - Credit: Archant

Help for Heroes has stepped in and given 96-year-old Robert Clark an emergency grant of £2,000 to help him to pay for a private carer in his home.

The charity helps wounded soldiers and their families.

Mr Clarke, one of the country’s oldest prisoner of war survivors, is fighting to stay in his home of 50 years after the town hall refused to increase the funding he needs for a live-in carer.

Since the Times highlighted his plight another supporter has set up a crowdfundraising page to help pay for his care.

So far it has raised almost £7,000 which will be donated to the widower.

For the last two years, Mr Clarke, who is registered blind, deaf in one ear and has severe mobility problems leaving him dependent on a wheelchair, has used his £50,000 life-savings to pay towards a £960-a week live-in carer.

Brent Council provide £350 a week and Mr Clark has made up the shortfall but the local authority is refusing to increase their contribution.

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They claim a lack of funding from the government and legislations prevented them from increasing the level of care they could offer.

Phil Porter, Brent Council’s strategic director of adult social care, added Mr Clark could defer payment until the house he lives in (which is half owned by him) was sold and the council were working closely with the family.

Mr Clark’s son Mike told the Times the family were overwhelmed with the generosity of the public but their fight continues.

He added: “Brent Council need to listen to the public and treat my father as an individual case.

“They haven’t even assessed him properly and are hoping we will give up.

“I refused to budge on this matter. Going into a care home will feel like my father is going back to a prison camp but Brent Council just won’t listen.

“We are truly grateful for all the support and generosity shown to my father and we are not going to give up.”

A spokesman for help for Heroes said: “The emergency grant was approved within two hours of initial contact with the family. The longer-term care will be looked at over the next few weeks and further grants made.”

To make a donation to Mr Clark visit gofundme.com/l7vuio.