London

WWII PoW gets emergency grant to stay in his home

Robbie Clark Image copyright PA
Image caption Robbie Clark said being in a residential care home would remind him of "being a prisoner of war"

A 96-year-old former prisoner of war from north west London has received an emergency grant so he can stay in his home.

Robbie Clark suffered "severe anxiety and distress" when he was held by the Nazis.

The great grandfather from Brent was facing a move to a care home after spending his savings on home care.

Mr Clark said being in a residential care home would "remind" him of "being a prisoner of war".

The Help for Heroes grant means he can stay in his home of 46 years while care options for the future are explored.

Image copyright PA
Image caption Robbie Clark is one of the few British soldiers to survive Hitler's 1,000-mile death march

Mr Clark, who is one of the few British soldiers to survive Hitler's 1,000-mile death march across eastern Europe, is blind, deaf in one ear and dependent on a wheelchair.

Linda Walton, from Help for Heroes, said the grant was short-term and future care options would have to be explored.

She said: "Robbie suffered severe anxiety and distress as a prisoner of war during World War II, and it is wrong that he should be subject to these feelings once again."

Phil Porter, from Brent Council's adult social care department, who has been working on Mr Clark's case, said the council recognised Mr Clark's contribution to the country.

"However, the problem arises as the care package that Mr Clark is choosing is not affordable to council taxpayers given the constraints of local government funding and the need to be consistent for the 2,900 people we support," he said.

"We have offered support and advice to help him to buy the additional care and support he wants at a competitive price, we are supporting an application for health funding to meet his health needs, and we have offered a deferred payment which means he doesn't need to sell his house to pay for his care."

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