10th Aug, 2020

Plans to move key Redditch leisure services to new company approved

Harry Leach 21st Sep, 2018

PLANS to move key leisure and cultural services to a new not-for-profit local authority trading company were approved at the Full Council Meeting on Monday evening.

It means Forge Mill Needle Museum and Bordesley Abbey Visitor Centre, the Palace Theatre, Pitcheroak Golf Course and the community centres in Windmill Drive, Oakenshaw, Batchley and Winyates Green will move to the new company before the end of the year.

Labour Leader Councillor Bill Hartnett (Church Hill) had called for an amendment to allow local residents to have a say in the name and logo of the new local authority trading company.

He said: “We did a survey last year and the public do want this company so we are completely behind it but I think it’s important that we get residents involved as much as we can.”

Councillor Mike Rouse (Con, Church Hill) and the Portfolio Holder for Leisure & Tourism, said: “I think it would have been an excellent idea but I do question why this has been brought up so late.

“It will be starting in October and we simply do not have enough time and cannot afford to keep delaying the project.”

Councillor Pat Witherspoon (Lab, Church Hill) suggested asking local school children to come up with the design and a name but the ruling Conservative group were quick to shut it down.

Councillor David Bush (Con, West) said: “I cannot support this amendment because we need a professional name and we need a professional image.

“We should not be trying to come up with other names this late on.”

Coun Hartnett said: “My intentions are not to delay the project at all, we can still make the deadline even if we let the people of Redditch decide.”

The amendment was defeated 16-10.

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