Fighting to save children’s centre

Upton residents, including parish councillor Angela Davies, are angry at the local authority decision to sell off Hornsea residential centre.'h5983a132
Upton residents, including parish councillor Angela Davies, are angry at the local authority decision to sell off Hornsea residential centre.'h5983a132
0
Have your say

COUNCILLORS and residents have joined forces to help save Hornsea Outdoor Residential Centre after funding was cut by Wakefield Council.

It was decided at a cabinet meeting last month stop funding the activity centre, and if no other organisation comes forward to run the facility, it will be forced to close in October.

But locals are fighting to make sure this does not happen.

Parish councillor for Upton and North Elmsall, Angela Davies, is heading the campaign.

She is an assistant at Oakfield Park School in Ackworth – which caters for children with special needs, and said it would be a crying shame if it were to close.

She said: “I have been going there every year for the past eight years and the children absolutely love it and they gain so much independence.

“Some of the youngsters don’t ever get a holiday so it is a really important experience for them.

“I am so passionate about the centre and just hope someone will come forward to help keep it running as it is.”

She started the Save Hornsea Residential Centre on Facebook which has nearly 200 members, and has been in contact with Hemsworth MP Jon Trickett.

Mr Trickett said: “The Hornsea Centre has been an invaluable resource to young people from the Wakefield area for a very long time. 

“It has been under threat of closure in the past and I have successfully campaigned, along with others, to keep it open.

“I am writing to Wakefield Council expressing my concerns about the potential closure of the centre and the hope that its future can be assured.”

The council has subsidised the facility for the past five years and based on current charges and usage, the authority would need £199,485 to continue running the centre for the next 12 months.

The centre’s overall running costs are £344,000, with the additional money coming from individual schools.

The cuts are part of council plans to save £67m over the next four years.

Coun Davies said: “I know there have to cutbacks but this should not be one of them.”

Visit www.facebook.com to join the campaign.