Revealed: The chequered past of the Highgate Care Home consultant assisting with evicting centenarians

Isla Meek : pic credit; Linked In

The controversy over the sale of the Mary Feilding Guild care home in north London to social care entrepreneur and property developer Mitesh Dhanak, continues unabated as he begins to arrange for the residents to leave.

Since his take over the now renamed Highgate Care Home he has brought in two consultants to help him move the residents out, two of them centenarians, so he can demolish the home and apply for planning permission to build a new one.

One of the consultants is Isla Joanne Meek. Her Linked In entry says she is managing director of Isla Meek Consulting, a small business based in Radstock, a town in Somerset. She has a long list of services she provides and she has both a management and nursing qualification. These include helping the management of new homes, safeguarding people, helping homes maximise their occupancy and charge higher fees for services and the occasional work advising homes how to handle Care Quality Commission inspections.

What she doesn’t disclose is that she was once consultant to a failing care care home in Westbury-On-Trym and for a period was struck off the Nursing and Midwifery Council register.

The care home in question ,Holmwood House nursing home, was subjection of a BBC TV investigation in 2014 and stories in a local community paper The Bristolian. The links to the tales are here and here.

Holmwood House; Pic credit:BBC

Holmwood House had eight substantiated allegations of abuse or neglect of residents there between 2012 and 2014,

Admissions had been temporarily suspended twice since June 2012 and, under a voluntary arrangement, no-one with nursing needs was admitted during that time.

The home’s owner Ghassan Al-Jibouri said he had “nothing to hide” and his first concern was the health and welfare of residents.

Isla Meek, then struck off by the NMC, was working there as a consultant and audited controlled drug records for manager Simone Smith which turned out to have had numerous forged signatures.

Since then Isla Meek has been reinstated on the NMC register – the NMC told me people could reapply for reinstatement five years after they had been struck off.

Wentworth Court: Pic credit; Care Choices

The Highgate Home is not the only work she has done for Mr Dhanak. She also acted as a consultant for Wentworth Court in Cheltenham, a home for people with serious dementia. The home has a good rating but its financing is similar to all Mr Dhanak’s other companies. It is run by First Cheltenham Care Ltd, a £100 company with him a sole director. The financing of the home comes loans and mortgages from Barclays Bank and the property is revalued most recently at £6.3 million.

Isla Meek Consulting is more modest. It has two directors, herself and Tim Meek and is based in a property solely owned by Tim Meek which he paid £170,000 five years ago. The latest accounts up to May 2020 show the business has assets of around £17,000 and capital and reserves of £7300.

I did ask Ms Meek for a comment via Highgate Care Home but none has been received at the moment.

The previous story is here: https://davidhencke.com/2021/03/15/how-the-genteel-retiree-world-of-centenarians-was-shattered-by-the-ruthless-modern-model-of-social-care-capitalism/

There is also an interesting article in the Ham and High: https://www.hamhigh.co.uk/news/care-experts-fire-mary-feilding-guild-warning-7896998 This warns about the dangers of severe health impacts on elderly people who are suddenly moved.

Mitesh Dhanak. Pic credit: Precious Homes

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