I’ve mentioned before how Greenwich Council is keeping very quiet about the specific effects on planned cuts to its services. Search the pages of its weekly newspaper, Greenwich Time, and you’ll find nothing.
Delve into its website, and there’s very little, unless you rummage through meeting agendas. What kind of saddo would sit up doing that, eh? Oh.
So here’s a sad piece of news you won’t find in Greenwich Time or on the council website. The One O’Clock Club in East Greenwich Pleasaunce, a drop-in centre for parents and toddlers, will lose its funding by the summer. Originally, the gates were planned to close in March, but it is likely it will be able to continue in its current form until May or June.
(Indeed, it appears all the borough’s One O’Clock Clubs are under threat – see the first comment below.)
Once the under-fives, and the paid staff who look after them, have taken their punishment for the actions of greedy bankers/ playing their part in creating a structural deficit (delete as per political preference), what happens after that?
The Friends of East Greenwich Pleasaunce is urgently trying to gather the expertise together to try to keep it open. Greenwich Council has said it is happy to redecorate the building and let an alternative group have it at a token rent, trying to develop it as a wider community facility that could attract funding and become a viable business.
All this, though, needs people – people who can deal with issues like health and safety, CRB checks, Ofsted inspections, insurance; as well as practical things like keeping it clean and secure. You know, the things we used to pay a council to do.
But despite the wearying task of picking up the pieces from politicians’ failures, there could be all kinds of possibilities in taking it on as an independent venture. It could almost be a bit Big So-sh-sosh… nah, can’t say the words… you know what I mean.
Whatever the bickering, though, these kids’ development and their parents’ sanity need a bit of help – and if you can help the Friends of East Greenwich Pleasance with their plans, I’m sure they’d appreciate you getting in touch.
And if you know of a Greenwich Council facility directly under threat from cuts, I’d be interested to hear about it, wherever in the borough it is, so we can draw up a picture of what’s going on. Because it doesn’t look as if the council will tell us…