Radfordian | 16.03.2010 16:10
According to reports, the Council has found a buyer for the property, but is refusing to disclose the buyer's identity.
The Council, which made the decision to close RUC via its Executive Portfolio Holder, council leader Jon Collins, says closing the building will save them £140,000 a year. Collins, is reported as saying "The city council has been talking to the organisations about the closure of Radford Unity Complex since September and we have found alternative accommodation and offered financial support in the immediate future to help them through their move." However, Balvinder Kaur of SCYS has said that the group has had no contact from the Council's senior managers or councillors. It is unclear what support the groups have been given to find new premises.
The NCCLOLs blog has done some research into how the decision was made and found that that the community groups had been given notice to quit before the decision to close RUC had even been made. In adition, the decision of the Executive Portfolio Holder was subject to a 'call-in' where the Overview and Scrutiny Committee set up a sub-committee to review the decision and ask the Executive to look at the issue again. This is the first call-in at NCC in 10 years.
The groups affected have received legal advice that they are entitled to 6 months notice to move out of the building. In addition they do not believe that have received an official notice to quit the premises. Jon Collins has said that the Council "hope any problems can be resolved without legal action."
In what will be seen by many to be a cynical move, Conservative candidate, Rowena Holland, has been campaigning on behalf of the community groups. Given the Tories' attitude to community provision demonstrated by the current administration at County Hall, her claim to defend these groups seems rather hollow.
You can sign a petition to prevent closure of the RUC here: http://petition.shiefton.com/
More from NCCLOLs here: http://ncclols.blogspot.com/2010/03/closure-of-radford-unity-complex.html