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Bid to take over community centre

By Staf Newsletter  |  Posted: December 13, 2012

Frank Jordan Centre

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A SUPPORT service for Stone residents is considering taking over a community centre if the town council decide to drop it in two years’ time.

Stone Town Council has a chance to hand back the Frank Jordan Centre to Stafford Borough Council in 2015 and many councillors back the move, because the centre is currently losing around £12,000 each year.

If the town council continues to lease the Frank Jodan Centre after 2015, it will be responsible for the next 25 years, until 2040.

The Lichfield Street building is in need of renovation and the council is facing an urgent £6,000 repair bill to avoid breaking the terms of its current lease.

The building would also need to be handed back to the council vacant, leaving current groups who use it looking for a new home.

The Den Youth Cafe and Stone’s Signposts Centre and a nursery are currently based at the centre.

At Tuesday’s town council meeting, Karen Wardell from the Signposts Centre called on councillors to delay their decision until April 2013 to give the group time to consider their future options.

She said: “We understand that the council would have to hand it back to the borough council but we would like to see it remain as a community hub.

“We are not asking the town council to keep the centre but to just to delay the decision.

"We are wondering whether we could take on the lease in 2015.”

Many councillors were in favour of handing back the centre but others said the council should keep it.

Councillor Mark Green said: “We are losing money on it and it is going to cost us a lot more. We can’t keep asking rate-payers to keep putting money in.”

But Councillor Jill Hood said the building could be a potential venue for local entrepreneurs to set up shop as well as continuing to house the Signposts Centre if the town council kept it on.

The town council was due to decide whether or not to terminate its contract for the centre’s management at Tuesday’s meeting but postponed its decision until the New

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