Seven more care homes revealed at the centre of a police probe following 12 deaths

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Seven more care homes at the centre of a police investigation following the deaths of 12 people have finally been revealed by West Sussex County Council.

A total of nine homes - all run by the same company - are now being scrutinised following serious safeguarding concerns.

Last month, the county council admitted that it had stopped placing people at eight homes - all run by Sussex Health Care - but would reveal the names of only two of them: The Laurels in Broadbridge Heath and Orchard Lodge in Warnham.

But today, the county council has said investigations are ongoing at nine care homes. As well as The Laurels and Orchard Lodge, they have been named as: Beech Lodge, Guildford Road, Broadbridge Heath; Beechcroft Care Centre, East Grinstead; Kingsmead Lodge, Crawley Road, Roffey; Longfield Manor, West Street, Billingshurst; Rapkyns Care Centre, Guildford Road, Broadbridge Heath; Rapkyns Nursing Home, Guildford Road, Broadbridge Heath and Woodhurst Lodge, Old Brighton Road, Pease Pottage, Crawley.

The county council says that the nine care homes are “the subject of a multi-agency safeguarding investigation being undertaken by West Sussex County Council, the Care Quality Commission, Health and Sussex Police.

“The provider is working with the agencies to provide the information requested.”

A meeting between police and relatives of people who died while resident at the care homes, along with health authorities and the West Sussex Coroner, was held in Horsham in August.

Valerie Tilley, 79, was one of the 12 whose deaths are being investigated and her son Adrian was among those at the meeting. He said later: “I still want answers. They are not telling us what they are investigating.”

Valerie Tilley, who had alzheimers, was resident at Longfield Manor care home in Billingshurst when she suffered two accidents within a week and died shortly afterwards at the Royal Sussex County Hospital in Brighton.

Police say that their investigations could go on until 2019.