Southern Cross to shut down
Staff and residents at more than 500 care homes have been left unsure over who would be running them after Southern Cross announced plans to shut down.
The cash-strapped operator, which has 752 homes and 31,000 residents, is to close after landlords refused to restructure rental agreements.
Landlords of 250 homes have agreed to take them back and run them themselves but negotiations are still ongoing with the owners of the other 502, a process that could take three to four months, it is understood.
The firm said final details of the plan had yet to be settled but all payments to trade creditors and staff were to be maintained to help with the transition to new owners or operators and keep continuity of care.
Southern Cross is the UK’s largest care home operator but ran into a financial crisis brought on by a rising rent bill and lower fees as occupancy rates declined and local authorities r