DCSIMG

Councillors vote for rethink on Jonathan Page closure

Campaigners attended a scrutiny committee meeting on Wednesday

Campaigners attended a scrutiny committee meeting on Wednesday

Children who face losing their after school club could have cause to smile – after district councillors voted in favour of a rethink.

Aylesbury Vale District councillors vote unanimously to request that the council’s cabinet thinks again about the decision to close the Jonathan Page Centre.

At a scrutiny committee meeting politicians heard impassioned speeches from members of the public outlining the personal impact that losing the centre would bring.

Andy George, headteacher at Thomas Hickman School, questioned how the council could even consider withdrawing a service that so actively supports both children and parents.

Howard Mordue, cabinet member for leisure services took questions on the proposed closure at the meeting.

He claimed that the could no longer afford the £63,000 annual costs of the centre, but admitted that it was unique service.

Under the plans funding for the centre would be withdrawn in six months time.

But Gill Lazonby, representing the Friends of Jonathan Page group, said that this was not sufficient time to ensure that the service could remain open independently.

The committee voted to request more time for the centre to develop a new way of operating.

The proposal will be considered at the council’s next cabinet meeting on March 11.

Robin Tusset, a campigner whose child uses the Jonathan Page Centre, said: “The scrutiny committee’s decision is welcome.

“We just hope the cabinet is willing to listen and think again.”

 

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