The borough’s disabled people will see a reduction in services, following a drop in funding for advice, advocacy and discrimination support.

Lewisham Council had offered £35,000 for a third-sector organisation to take on the work, but no group applied.

The council used to grant £87,565 for the work.

This comes after the closure of the Lewisham Disability Coalition, which shut down in January after it came into financial trouble.

It was a deaf and disabled people organisation run by deaf and disabled people.

Following the closure, its advice and information work passed on to Lewisham Advice – a new service partly run by volunteers, with the Lewisham Disability Coalition, starting in April, to monitor discrimination.

But Cllr Jacq Paschoud queries whether the coalition got enough support before it closed.

Speaking at a healthier communities select committee, she said: “Because the majority of its clients had learning disabilities and mental health problems and therefore were quite vulnerable, I don’t think that they were helped enough.

“In the future where vulnerable groups are trustees we want to avoid this because this service is now lost,” she added.

She said the coalition’s work “isn’t replicated elsewhere.”

“I just think it needs to be noted for the future that where to give grants we need to be sure there’s adequate support,” she added.

The drop in funding will mean a reduction in service, Lewisham’s head of service, cultural and community development, James Lee, said.

But the council will work with the organisations who have picked up some of the work “in an attempt to ameliorate this with efficiencies and joint working,” he said.

The coalition was given support, but trustees often went against the council’s advice, he said.

“The real lesson learned is sometimes those trustees are not able to take that  support and are removed from the understanding of some of their duties.

“I’m not sure as a council officer what we do sometimes in those circumstances.

“We tried with actions plans [but] for whatever reason every single time actions were not implemented, conversations were had outside official meetings, side agreements were made,” he said.

He said the new commission would choose what to spend the £35,000 per year on, although that is not likely to be allocated until next April.

For the next eight months the funding will go to support Lewisham Community Transport Scheme to enable them to develop their future plans, including those for people with disabilities.