Solihull team blazes trail of care scheme

Cyril Dixon reports

THE IN-HOUSE team at Solihull Council and solicitors from Birmingham firm Martineau Johnson have hammered out terms on a pioneering privatisation venture.

They conducted negotiations on a contract to provide day care and home support services for the council's social services department.

Martineau Johnson acted for service providers Family Care Trust in the talks with Solihull's team, led by assistant town clerk Michael Blamire-Brown.

Corporate partner Andrew Whitehead, heading negotiation for Martineau, believes the contract is one of the first for the provision of welfare services

"The major difficulty was designing a contract framework for providing services with the emphasis on individual care. The problem was trying to define service specifications."

The transaction will mean that Family Care Trust, a charity, will run four of the council's day care centres and home support services.

Whitehead, a partner in the corporate department, was backed by Rowan Ferguson, an assistant in Martineau Johnson's health and education team.