Public consultation in Corby over planned children’s centre cuts ‘a success’

Centre Protest: Corby: 4Corby Kids public protest against cuts to childrens' centres including Pen Green Centre. 

Saturday April 2 2016 NNL-160204-181744009
Centre Protest: Corby: 4Corby Kids public protest against cuts to childrens' centres including Pen Green Centre. Saturday April 2 2016 NNL-160204-181744009
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A community development worker behind the protests over planned cuts to children’s centres in Northamptonshire says a public consultation was a ‘resounding success’.

Northamptonshire County Council plans to close four children’s centres in the north of the county, with funding cuts to others.

And after a protest by 4CorbyChildren a week ago, more than 70 pupils, parents and professionals turned up to ask questions at a consultation in Corby on Friday (April 8).

Community development worker Sandra Mole said: “Staff from both Homestart and the Citizens Advice Bureau spoke passionately about the partnerships they have formed across the four children’s centres and how their funding and ability to offer services to Corby families will be affected if the children’s centre funding is altered.

“Throughout the session brave families shared stories of how the four centres across Corby have been a part in transforming their lives from increasing work prospects, offering volunteering opportunities, supporting them through mental health difficulties, rescuing them from social isolation and propping them up in times of crisis.”

“We already had a 10 per cent cut last year and they want to cut another 25 per cent off that.

“We can’t cut our targeted services for those families who are already in the system.

“I think the resounding message was firmly, no more cuts!”

Corby is home to the UK’s first children’s centre, Pen Green, as well as ones at Exeter, Woodnewton and Kingswood.

In the north of the county, the Croyland and Oakway centres in Wellingborough and Kettering’s Ronald Tree and Thornton centres have all been earmarked for closure.

Northants County Council will be holding a series of workshops with their online consultation, and will be at Woodnewton on April 22 and Pen Green on April 26.

An online petition against the cuts can be found here, with the county council’s online consultation here.