Searchlight charity in Newhaven for disabled adults in merger deal

A CHARITY in Newhaven which offered residential, day care services and respite care for adults with physical and learning disabilities has merged with a national organisation.

Searchlight Workshops, in Claremont Road, merged with FitzRoy Support on Saturday (September 1) in the ‘best interest of both charities’.

FitzRoy said it would continue to provide support to those on site and work with them to offer improved choice and flexibility in how they live their lives and plan their futures, whether they are resident or use the day and community services available on site.

Searchlight staff have been transferred to FitzRoy and are in a consultation period.

The charity had already made some redundancies.

A spokeswoman for FitzRoy said: “Some changes in how the site is operated are a likely outcome as FitzRoy currently operates with different structures.

“Any changes will be as a result of consultation and with the best interests of the people we support at heart.”

The decision follows its provision of management support and consultation to Searchlight since November 2011.

A statement issued by Martin Surgey, former Chairman of Searchlight Workshops, and Edward Thornton-Firkin,

Chairman of FitzRoy, said: “The Trustees of FitzRoy and Searchlight Workshops have come to an agreement that it would be in the best interest of both charities and their beneficiaries, employees, volunteers and supporters to merge.”

FitzRoy operates at 56 locations across England, specialising in supporting adults with learning disabilities through supported living services, residential care, day and community services, and support to individuals in their own homes.

Chief executive Anna Galliford said: “We are delighted to welcome Searchlight into the FitzRoy network, and look forward to working with staff and the local community in Newhaven to build the support for the residents and people who use our services.”

Searchlight Workshops was founded in 1933 by Miss Muriel Powell MBE.

The current site on Claremont Road hosts administration support, three separate residential units and day service which supports up to 40 individuals and employs 60 staff.