CQC finds inadequate care at Bupa run Crawfords Walk Care Home in Chester

Published: 26 June 2017 Page last updated: 3 November 2022

The Care Quality Commission has again rated the quality of care provided at Crawfords Walk Care Home in Hoole, Chester as Inadequate following inspections in March and June this year.

Crawfords Walk Care Home, which is run by Bupa Care Homes (CFHCare) Limited was the subject of an undercover Dispatches documentary that aired on Channel 4 on Monday 19 June.

This home was urgently inspected on 5 June (after the scheduled inspection that took place on 27 and 28 March) as concerns had been raised by the production company about people’s safety.

The full report from these inspection visits has been published today on our website.

Debbie Westhead, CQC’s Deputy Chief Inspector for Adult Social Care, said:

“I was utterly appalled at the care we found at Crawfords Walk Care Home. People are entitled to services that provide safe, caring and high quality care; and once again this home has fallen short of what we expect to be provided."

“We found three breaches in regulation at our previous inspection and disappointingly found limited progress has been made in addressing these despite us telling the provider Bupa Care Homes (CFHCare) Limited where they must improve. We also found fresh concerns at this inspection."

“We were very concerned about the lack of dignity afforded to people using the service. There were not enough staff to meet people’s needs, especially at night and early morning. Some residents told us they were waiting 15-30 minutes for support to use the toilet which resulted in them not reaching the toilet in time, which is absolutely unacceptable."

“We also found residents were being woken from 5:15am for the morning routine of washing and dressing, regardless of their preference for waking. Some people were then put back into bed fully dressed. This is part of an unacceptable institutionalised culture."

“We found a lack of consistent and effective management which coupled with ineffective systems for checking quality meant issues were not identified or resolved."

“We are working to support the people affected by this poor care, which does not have any place in today’s society. We are working with local partners including Cheshire West and Chester Council to ensure the safety of people using this service.”

Other findings from the inspection included:

  • Appropriate staffing levels were not in place, and poor planning meant shortfalls often happened when cover had not been arranged for annual leave or sickness of other staff leaving people at risk of harm.
  • People were not always supported to have maximum choice and control of their lives.
  • Inspectors identified that people living on Eastgate and Bridgegate units were woken, got out of bed, washed, dressed and placed back to bed. By 6:30am on Eastgate inspectors found eight people back in bed fully clothed after having personal care needs attended to by staff. Staff on the Bridgegate unit confirmed that they commenced personal care, changing bedding and getting people dressed from 05:15am regardless of people’s personal preferences on what time they wanted to get up. This showed that cultural and institutional practices continued at the service which impacted on the care and well-being of people supported.
  • On the Bridgegate unit people had hair that was ‘greasy’ in appearance or not brushed and thick dirt was located under people’s nails. This showed that people’s personal appearance and personal care needs were not consistently maintained.
  • A bathing rota was used on Eastgate unit. This rota identified specific days in the week where people would be allocated time to have a bath or shower. This is institutionalised practice and does not give people any choice or control over their lives.
  • One person living at the service had lost a total of 8kg in a six week period in 2017. This person had not been considered as part of the weight monitoring clinic. Records viewed by inspectors did not clearly record decisions or actions taken in response to the weight loss. Inspectors raised this with the manager who confirmed that they would look into it immediately following the visit.

CQC are now considering further enforcement action against the provider, Bupa Care Homes (CFHCare) Limited. This is currently subject to legal proceedings and CQC are unable to report on these proceedings until they have concluded.

Any regulatory decision that CQC takes is open to challenge by a registered person through a variety of internal and external appeal processes.


For further information please contact CQC Regional Engagement Officer Kerri James by email kerri.james@cqc.org.uk or by phone on 07464 92 9966. 

Journalists wishing to speak to the press office outside of office hours can find out how to contact the team here.

Please note: the press office is unable to advise members of the public on health or social care matters. For general enquiries, please call 03000 61 61 61.

I was utterly appalled at the care we found at Crawfords Walk Care Home

Debbie Westhead, CQC’s Deputy Chief Inspector for Adult Social Care

About the Care Quality Commission

The Care Quality Commission (CQC) is the independent regulator of health and social care in England.

We make sure health and social care services provide people with safe, effective, compassionate, high-quality care and we encourage care services to improve.

We monitor, inspect and regulate services to make sure they meet fundamental standards of quality and safety and we publish what we find to help people choose care.