Uk news Furious row erupts over the future of community centre MetiNews.Com
MetiNews.Com - East Ayrshire Council are eying up plans to take over the centre, known as the CEVIC in Ballochmyle Street, Catrine.
Breaking News ! An almighty row has erupted over the future of a Community Education and Visitors Centre. East Ayrshire Council are eying up plans to take over the centre, known as the CEVIC in Ballochmyle Street, Catrine. The local authority aims to use the base as part of their early years childcare expansion plans. But if that goes ahead, then it would leave serious question marks over the future of the village nursery on nearby Newton Street. The existing building was formerly occupied by the Catrine Community Trust and was used for a variety of education and community-related purposes including a café, play facilities, community museum, community garden and meeting facilities. It was open seven days a week throughout the day and evening. Now plans have been drawn up to transform the CEVIC into a nursery, catering for 64 children during the day and supported by around 13 staff. But if that happens, villagers fear that the nursery site on Newton Street could be sold off to developers – while they lose a valued community asset in the process. Another major source of anger is that the site of the proposed new nursery is at the opposite end of the village to Catrine Primary School. Opponents say this could result in parents with children attending both institutions walking the one length of the village, then the other, for drop-offs and pick-ups. Now a campaign group has been formed to resist any attempts to seize the CEVIC from community use. On Thursday, several members of the group gathered outside the CEVIC in a public show of opposition to EAC’s proposals.
. “They also plan on moving the kids’ nursery to the CEVIC, from a perfectly functioning building, meaning we are due to also lose that building.” The volunteer group, who describe themselves as “concerned, frustrated and angered Catrine residents” have started a Facebook group which boasts more than 260 members, while a local petition against the plans has now been signed by several hundred. The spokesperson continued: “We have only recently uncovered the background information which seems to have resulted in the shock news that the CEVIC is to be taken over by East Ayrshire Council and turned into an Early Childhood Centre – without the knowledge, or agreement, of the local and wider community. “The current nursery is in a perfectly adequate building and has been for decades. No-one understands why all of this is happening.” Another member of the group added: “We simply want the council to stop the proposed change of use in its tracks immediately, review it, come up with proposals, explain them at an open community public meeting and let the community vote.” Council officials have, however, defended their decision to look at new options for the CEVIC building. David Mitchell, chief governance officer for East Ayrshire Council, said: “With regard to the future use of the CEVIC building, the facility has not fulfilled its potential and the hall became a tearoom which required substantial grant support to operate. “The option of converting it for use as an Early Childhood Centre was seen as a way of ensuring that the building could have a future as a public asset.” A decision on the proposals is expected to be made next month by East Ayrshire Council’s planning committee.
Source = MetiNews.Com