Rally cry to help save community centres

Lewisham Park Youth Centre is one of three in the area that is earmarked for closure.
Lewisham Park Youth Centre is one of three in the area that is earmarked for closure.
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Morley councillors have issued a rallying cry to help save two of Morley’s community centres.

A summit to discuss how to save two centres which could be earmarked for closure, at Lewisham Park and Gildersome, will take place on Friday and the Mayor of Morley believes it is vital to keep the centres running.

Coun Wyn Kidger, who is supporting the Lewisham Park user groups, said: “I know the centre well and its closure is unacceptable.

“We will be working closely with user groups to see how we can deliver a plan to keep the centres open and on a sustainable future.”

The centres are part of cost-cutting plans from Leeds City Council, which is tasked with making £46m of savings over the next financial year.

To remain open, the buildings would have to either transfer ownership from the local authority to a community organisation, provided they can run it “more effectively,” or alternatively improve its viability and income.

While suggesting a community group could take over the Lewisham Park centre, Coun Kidger also suggested that Morley Town Council might look at running it.

Coun Bob Gettings, who is working with Gildersome Youth Centre users group, said: “We will be exploring options, and our aim is to keep all groups accommodated within the village.

“This could include expanding the meeting hall in Gildersome which could provide improved facilities in the village.

The meeting will take place on Friday at 10am in the council chamber, Morley Town Hall.