PARENTS of an adult with learning disabilities at Botton village have issued a heartfelt plea to the management to hold an open meeting to reassure residents about its future.

David and Elizabeth Robertson said their daughter was “enchanted” by the North Yorkshire care village from her first visit and loved the ethos of residents and carers living side by side.

In an open letter to the Camphill Village Trust (CVT), the charity which runs Botton in Danby Dale, the couple say they hope a meeting can be arrange for trust management, residents and parents in an effort to put minds at rest over proposed changes to the way of life there.

They said: “As parents of a Botton villager we have watched with dismay CVT?s continued attempts to justify their damaging policies that appear to be hell bent on destroying the wonderful shared living community our daughter chose to live in.

“We hoped that CVT would see the folly of their ways and allow a unique, self governing community continue to provide a sense of community, sense of worth and mutual respect, regardless of ability, so absent in the social care sector.

“After visiting Botton we saw why our daughter was so enchanted and knew she was making the right choice for her - there was no sense of separation between carer and cared for and our daughter could live a life where she had an appropriate peer group.”

The couple said they have concerns about their daughter’s future after months of speculation about how the village will be run in the future, with paid staff rather than volunteer co-workers.

“We feel that it is now imperative that an open meeting be held with trust managers to enable parents, family and legal representatives of Botton Villagers to clarify honestly the proposed timescale and extent of any changes to the living arrangements of our loved ones.”

A spokesman for CVT said: “There is no plan for moving people who are supported in Botton from their homes.

“Any present changes are normal responses to people requesting a move, and as always any proposed change would have to be discussed, in line with best practice, not with an open meeting but on an individual and home by home basis.

“We remain committed to the benefits that a sense of community brings.

“We will provide a diversity of accommodation, work and leisure activities empowering people to have more choice from a greater variety of options.”