15th Dec, 2017

Plans revealed to relocate Community Contact Centre to the town's library

COUNCIL chiefs have unveiled plans to relocate Evesham’s Community Contact Centre to the town’s library next year.

The centre, which has been based on Abbey Road since 2003, provides services on behalf of Wychavon District Council, Evesham Town Council, Worcestershire County Council and West Mercia Police.

But time has been called on the venture after Wychavon District Council revealed it wouldn’t extend its lease with building owners West Mercia Police when it expires next year.

Wychavon chiefs claim the site is too big for its needs and revealed Worcestershire County Council had suggested the centre move to Evesham Library on Oat Street.

Although the move would cost an extra £11,000 a year, council chiefs claimed they could make staff savings and would be at less of risk of large repair and maintenance bills.

Evesham Town Council could also be making a move to the library, but are yet to make a final decision.

The plans were revealed at Wychavon’s Executive Board meeting last week where councillors gave the council’s Deputy Managing Director the green light to proceed.

Speaking at the meeting, Coun Lynne Duffy, portfolio holder for Resources, said: “Although this is a slight increase of £11,000 to our revenue budget, it does release use from potential high maintenance costs on the existing building in the future.

“It will improve the sustainability for the library and this model mirrors the one that we have in Droitwich which has been very successful for all partners.”

Bengeworth councillor Martin King said: “I think there’s one other issue which is very much in favour of this which Lynne didn’t mention and that is its town centre location.

“The current centre is a little bit out on the edge and there are comments from some people about its sustainability.

“This, right in the middle by the bus station, convenient to car parks, it ticks a number of other boxes.”

After being quizzed by Coun Charles Tucker on whether the council will face an exit free from the lease, Managing Director Jack Hegarty confirmed they wouldn’t.

“We’re using the break clause in the lease. If we miss the break clause then we would have to stay for a number of other years and that’s the reason we’re doing it now.”

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