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Cokayne Avenue children's centre among those involved in Derbyshire County Council review

By Ashbourne News Telegraph  |  Posted: May 14, 2014

Cokayne Avenue children's centre among those involved in Derbyshire County Council review

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FAMILIES who make use of the town's children's centre in Cokayne Avenue are being asked how they think services should be delivered.

Derbyshire County Council is trying to reduce spending on services for children and families by £1.1 million to meet targets.

In a report proposing a review, which begins today, five possible options are outlined.

These are: charging parents for using children's centres; charging organisations for using the buildings; reducing staffing levels; closing some centres; and only offering services which are not already available elsewhere through the voluntary, community and independent sector.

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The review will run for five weeks.

Derbyshire's first children's centre opened 14 years ago. There are now 54 centres across the county, with one in Ashbourne, and they cost £8 million a year in total to run.

Feedback from the review will be used for a follow-up cabinet report in the autumn.

If any centres are earmarked for possible closure, a further three-month consultation would take place before a recommendation was made to cabinet.

Councillor Kevin Gillott said: "We want to hear from Derbyshire residents, so we can take their views into account.

"We don't want to make cuts to our services but the reality is that the reduction in our budget means there will be a significant impact on local people.

"As I've said before, we're very sad to be in this situation and will carefully consider all our options."

To find out more or take part in the review visit www.derbyshire.gov.uk/ccreview.

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