A church-goer has slated social services after an 89-year-old woman with Alzheimer's was removed from a North Kensington community in a move which she fears "will shorten her life".
Kitty Larkin, 73, of Bevington Road, North Kensington, has lived a stone's throw from her elderly neighbour Conchita, of Burgess Field sheltered housing in Wornington Road, North Kensington, for more than 20 years.
But last Sunday, when she came to collect her for their weekly minibus trip to Our Lady of Holy Souls church in Kensal Road, North Kensington, Conchita had disappeared.
Friends were later informed that the pensioner, who used to be a regular at the now closed Edenham Day Centre, had been moved to the new Ellesmere care home in Fulham Road, Chelsea.
Mrs Larkin, who is a member of the pensioners' forum and Sixty Plus, felt compelled to speak out about the move and feels the council should pour more money into increasing care facilities in sheltered housing - which would enable vulnerable people to stay in the community.
"I feel the move will shorten her life," she said.
"She was so happy at Burgess Field. So why do this? I think it's all to do with money.
"I feel a bit angry because Conchita is like a little child, so gentle, docile and obedient. All she needs is tender loving care. She's been getting that for a number of years and she is a joy to care for.The other ladies at church will miss her, too.
"The elderly should beware. When one has no family, you are in the powers of the authority.They think they know best."
Mrs Larkin estimates the journey to Conchita's new home will take her one hour and she will no longer be able to take her to church in the minibus, which only serves the area around North Kensington.
Conchita has also been separated from her close friend 91-year-old Rosa. The pair were nicknamed "the twins" by those who knew them.
A spokesman for Kensington and Chelsea Council said they could not comment on individual cases, but stressed that any decision is carefully made after detailed assessments.