Residents set to run Arleston Community Centre

Telford & Wrekin Council is handing Arleston Community Centre over to a group of local residents after they agreed to run the facility following the council’s budget consultation.

Residents set to run Arleston Community Centre
The move is all part of the council’s drive to encourage the borough’s community to run services themselves to help the authority achieve budget savings.

Elsewhere, this has seen the running of a number of libraries handed over to parish councils and other organisations.

In Arleston, residents came forward after the council explained the challenges it was facing to keep community centres open.

Residents formed a charitable organisation called Arleston Community Centre, which took over responsibility for the facility from Tuesday November 1.

Telford & Wrekin Council will continue to work in partnership with the residents’ group for the first few weeks, offering advice and practical support while the new arrangements are established.

The handover was marked by a launch at a coffee morning at the centre, which raised money for Macmillan Cancer Support.

Councillor Lee Carter, Telford & Wrekin Council’s cabinet member for Finance and Service Delivery, said: “This is another great example of the community listening to what we’ve been saying and stepping up to the plate to help us out by running a frontline service.

“This has been the toughest budget we’ve ever had to achieve and we really couldn’t have done it without the help of groups like the Arleston Community Centre charitable trust so I would really like to thank them for their support and commitment.”

Councillor Paul Watling,  Telford & Wrekin Council’s cabinet member for Communities, said: “I am delighted that we have reached an arrangement with local residents that means Arleston Community Centre will continue to serve its community.

“We are talking to other residents’ groups around the borough to see what is possible for our other community centres and we hope to have more positive news on this going forward.”