Conservatives block Labour motion to extend children’s centres consultation

Shire Hall, where Warwickshire County Council sits
Shire Hall, where Warwickshire County Council sits

The deadline for people to give feedback on possible children’s centres cuts in Warwickshire will not be extended after a Labour motion to do so was defeated.

The county’s Labour Group wished to extend the deadline beyond Monday September 11 after claiming parents were worried the issue might go under the radar over the summer holidays.

Although the motion had support from the Liberal Democrats and the Greens at a Warwickshire County Council meeting on Tuesday July 18, the ruling Conservatives voted against the motion.

The leader of the council Cllr Izzi Seccombe pointed out five weeks of the consultation period, which started on Thursday June 29, will be during term time.

Labour councillor Caroline Phillips said, “The council has got form on its timing of children’s centre consultations. In the first round of cuts four years ago, that consultation also took place over the summer holidays. Couldn’t the council be better organised this time around?”

Cllr Seccombe said there were many ways residents can contribute, such as filling out the consultation form online, attending a public meeting, emailing or calling 01926 742350 to make an appointment.

She added: “We are committed to making this consultation as open and accessible as possible. I very much hope many residents will attend the public meetings and get involved with the consultation through the other channels.”

If the plans go ahead, 12 of the 39 children’s centres will become ‘family hubs’, with the rest likely to go.

Some public consultations have already taken place, but there are more planned.

The next consultation in Rugby takes place at the Benn Hall in Newbold Road from 7.30-9pm on Wednesday, July 26.

And in Warwick district, consultations will take place at Northgate House, Warwick, CV34 4JH, from 7.30-9pm on Monday, July 31; and at St John’s Church in Warwick Road, Kenilworth, from 7.30-9pm on Tuesday, August 1.

Access the online consultation here