MASSIVE cuts to services enabling elderly and vulnerable people to live independently in their own homes will be top of the agenda at a meeting in Sandwell tomorrow.

The borough council fears it will it will have to slash 30 per cent from the Government-grant based Supporting People Programme over the next three years.

Cabinet member for adult social care Councillor Linda Horton said “wonderful work” had been possible through the programme which had made a real difference to people’s lives.

But as well as tomorrow’s annual showcase event at Oldbury Council House hearing from a wide range of people whom the programme has helped, there will be talks on how to make cuts.

This programme, introduced by the Government in 2003, provides a number of services, including help for both young and older people at risk, those with mental health problems or learning disabilities, deaf people and women fleeing domestic abuse.

"As a Government grant-based programme, we must expect to have to plan for budget cuts of up to 30 per cent in the next three years and this is one of issues we'll be discussing," said Cllr Horton, adding: "We will be using Friday's event to look at the achievements made and learn how we can use those examples to improve services further and make sure we prioritise what works best as our budget reduces.”