Monday 4 March 2024
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Nottingham

City council to launch public consultation on closure of Nottingham children’s centres, play and youth services

Nottingham City Council is set to go out to public consultation on £12.2m of savings, which include closing six children’s centres.

Nottingham City Council has a plan to fill a funding gap of £12.2m over the next year, and will need to save another £15.7m – although it has not set out how it will save this second sum.

At an Executive Board meeting on Tuesday, November 16, councillors agreed to launch the eight-week consultation on a range of plans to fill the large £12.2m void in its budget.

The authority is proposing to close six of nine city children’s centres, which provide support to parents and children, and move to a three centre model.

The centres provide early help for parents with newborns to five-year-olds, as well as parents with disabled children.

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It also plans to reduce play and youth services, which includes the reduction of play and youth buildings in the city offering recreational activities.

Cllr Cheryl Barnard (Lab), portfolio holder for children and young people, said: “Parents and young people will find this very difficult reading.

“Valuable intervention and provision work with children and young people have taken the brunt of the savings.

“We will be looking at different models of delivery and will work with organisations to maximise the opportunities for young people.

“For me, it has been a difficult budget to come to terms with. It is with regret we are having to make these cuts.”

Cllr David Mellen (Lab), leader of the council, said: “It will be a genuine consultation for eight weeks to take the views of people who live and work in our city and voluntary and faith organisations.

“We will do what we can to explain and listen to people’s concerns about the proposals that are being put forward.

“I have had letters and comments on social media; people are rightly concerned about what is in here.

“People are concerned about if we cut youth and play – will it not be the case these statutory services will have a greater demand on them?”

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