APPROVAL has been given to demolish an ageing Poole residential care home after the last residents have moved out.

Mitchell House, a 50-bed care home at Canford Heath for people with dementia, is closing this summer after a change in the contract between Borough of Poole and Care UK.

The majority of the 46 residents have been moved to Care UK’s The Potteries care home in Poole. However, 18 residents remain to be relocated.

Borough of Poole owns the freehold of the land and the site is likely to be used for a future “care development”.

An online petition to save Mitchell House was signed by more than 1,700 people but the building was said not to be suitable for the needs of residents with dementia in the future.

A report before cabinet pointed out that it will cost £244,000 to demolish the building now but if it was delayed for 18 months, maintenance and security costs would add another £25,000.

Closure of the home, along with the Garland Road Day Centre, is expected to save the council more than £750,000 over the term of its contract with Care UK to run its dementia services, up to 2021.

Cllr Karen Rampton, cabinet portfolio holder for health and wellbeing, said: “The decision to close Mitchell House was extremely difficult and we have worked hard to ensure the impact on residents is minimised.

She said they were working with remaining residents to help them move to a home of their choice, at their pace.

“Mitchell House will remain open as normal until all residents have been moved successfully,” she said.

“The decision to then demolish the building after the departure of the final residents was unanimously approved by cabinet.

“Early demolition of the building will help reduce the visual impact on neighbouring properties, reduce the possibility of vandalism and clear the site for future development.

“Work is now under way to assess the different options for a new care development on the site,” she added.