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Public Meeting to discuss future of Riverside Youth Centre

by Richard Samuel on 19 April, 2018



A very well attended public meeting was held on Monday to discuss the Conservative’s plans for Riverside Youth Centre. The centre is under threat because of cuts made to Youth services by the current Conservative council administration who last year reduced the budget by 50%. The cuts come in September. The meeting was well organised by the London Road and Snow Hill Partnership and I managed to get Cllr Paul May, the Cabinet Member responsible and the Director, Mike Bowden to address the meeting.

Cllr May is ruling out sale of the building which had been reported in the Bath Chronicle which is welcome and it was also announced that Mentoring Plus who currently work out of the building are the preferred bidder to take on the running of the centre. Not so good was the likelihood that there may be a break in the availability of the drop in sessions from September whilst the future is sorted out. It also seems that the Secretary of State’s permission might be required for the Council to dispose of the building to Mentoring Plus.

I called for more flexibility in the timetable which is being artificially driven by these ideological cuts and Cllr Alison Millar and I will be following this up. I reiterated my opposition to the sale of the building other than to a community consortium and called for the building to be listed as an asset of community value making its sale for development more difficult to achieve.


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One Response

  1. pauline mungai says:

    it was very heartening to hear the level of support for the continuation of the riverside youth hub at the meeting last week. as richard samuel mentions, it was less heartening to hear that there may be an extended period of time when the club is not available for use whilst its future is sorted out. personally i did not understand why this might be necessary. if the club is to be retained and not sold, then surely it can continue to function during the interim period. i felt this was something to do with staff not being able to be employed in the interim. my only qualifications are as a parent and grand parent but i would gladly volunteer to help out if it meant keeping the centre open.

    it feels to me that bath city council and the government are getting increasingly embroiled in how much money something makes and how much something will cost now. it is obvious, to myself and to many voters, that the demise of the centre or, indeed, the lack of it for a period of time, is likely to result in more money needing spending in the long term. the youth of today need to feel valued, they need to see that there are good things put in place for them. it has been proven that if youth feel ignored, bored and not worthy of recourses, that is when they are more likely to commit vandalism, take drugs and cause trouble.

    riverside has been a boon for lots of young people in differing ways throughout the four and a half decades i have lived in bath. it is an excellent place, with excellent staff and is in a great position. i believe it is imperative that it continues uninterrupted. my grandson attends the club for autistic children and teenagers held there one evening a week and i would liked to point out that for children on the spectrum, continuity is of the highest importance.

    i very much like the idea put forward by richard samuel of having the building listed as an asset of community value.

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