Two Barnsley family centres to be relocated

Wombwell and Cudworth’s family centres are set to be moved out of the schools they are based in on a permanent basis.

Friday, 18th March 2022, 1:54 pm
Updated Friday, 18th March 2022, 3:16 pm

Wombwell’s family centre is currently based in Kings Oak Primary School, but “ongoing access issues” mean Barnsley Council hope to move it into the Wombwell Centre on Barnsley Road.

A report to cabinet members states: “There have been ongoing access issues for families and some service providers due to the amount of congestion, traffic relating to housing development adjacent to the site and parking restrictions/road safety concerns in the immediate vicinity which had resulted in some services withdrawing their delivery from this site prior to the pandemic due to the impact on accessibility (e.g. midwifery clinic withdrawn due to impact on delivery of community based health services from this site).”

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Wombwell's family centre is currently based in Kings Oak Primary School

It adds that moving the family centre “would allow joined up service delivery and ensure building use is increased and at the same time free up space within the school for educational recovery.”

Plans are in place to expand Birkwood Primary in Cudworth, to accept 140 extra pupils in a £2.5m expansion plan.

The family centre which is based in the school would be moved to the Cudworth I Know I Can youth support site on Snydale Road, to make way for the school nursery.

During a consultation, 13 objections were made to the plans to move the Wombwell centre, with 94 per cent of respondents supporting the move.

Objections were made on the grounds of lack of outdoor space, the potential impact on parking, and the centre would be “too far”.

In Cudworth, 98 per cent of respondents supported the move.

A budget of £8,000 has been earmarked for the Wombwell move, to be funded from the existing early start and family centres revenue budgets.

The cost of remodelling the Cudworth I Know I Can building to support the family centre is estimated at around £40,000, which will be “offset with the greater flexibility afforded at Birkwood Primary without the Family Centre on site, as the cost to refurbish the family centre space is significantly less than the cost of new build.”

The plans are recommended for approval at BMBC’s next cabinet meeting on March 23.