Drugs rehabilitation centre: Applicants move to reassure residents

HAVING drawn the ire of the town for submitting the proposal, applicant Ian Aldridge and his wife Helen are reassuring Dunmow that the plans will not go ahead unless they are “completely happy” with the idea.

The couple believe that the application needs to resolve any safety issues in order to move forward.

“We want to assure people that although we would love this to happen we want it to happen in the right way,” Mr Aldridge told the Broadcast.

“We will only go forward with the project if we’re 100 per cent happy.”

He added: “I think people get the wrong idea when they think of rehabilitation centres. People conjure up images of people in squats with needles - rarely do they recall that respected people such as Oprah Winfrey and Prince Harry have been to rehab.

“Having said that, we understand that people are concerned and they have every right to complain.”

Mr and Mrs Aldridge are eager to dispel any concerns that they would sell up shop and move once the centre is complete.

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“This is our home and we have no intention of moving,” they added.

“We have two daughters under five and another on the way. Our children will be closer to the clinic than any other children so if we thought they were in danger we wouldn’t go through with this.”

Mr Aldridge told the Broadcast that he has contacted schools in other areas which are close to similar centres and was surprised to hear that “no issues had ever arisen”.

And he remains confident that the clientele would not pose a threat to anyone because they would be properly vetted before being accepted.

“We will know more about the people who enter the centre than we do about the thousands of guests we have at the B&B,” he insists.

“Everybody who wants to use the clinic will be vetted so we will know about their background, and to see whether the programme we will be running is suitable for them and for us.

“Even if it does get accepted, there will still be hoops for us to jump through and avenues to explore before we are completely happy.”

Mr and Mrs Aldridge have told the Broadcast that they are happy to speak to anybody with fears or concerns about the proposed centre.


• Clients will be distinguished and respected people in their industry with high level jobs

• All the applicants will be vetted by a doctor, the therapist and Mr Aldridge

• Clientele will attend the clinic on voluntary basis; none of the patients would be referred to the centre

• It is proposed that no publicly funded patients would be accepted to the centre

• All patients would be supported by a full schedule of activities during the entire period of their stay at the centre; activities would continue until late in the evening

• In the event that a patient did suffer a relapse whilst outside the centre, they would be asked to leave the clinic