As reported in today’s Redditch Standard, the transfer of some parts of leisure services in the town are proposed to be moved to a company that the council will set up. The plans are subject to the vote of Full Council, but with the Conservatives and Labour both supporting the plans at a previous committee meeting the process is very likely to go ahead.

The assets that are included in the proposals include the Forge Mill Needle Museum and Bordesley Abbey Visitors Centre, the Palace Theatre, Pitcheroak Golf Course and the community centres in Winyates Green, on Windmill Drive, in Oakenshaw and in Batchley. 

There are many reasons for the transfer, including savings to the council. It is also about building a leisure service that is better able to respond to the needs of its customers. 

At the previous committee meeting (Executive Committee) the Labour delegates tried to put forward an amendment to allow a competition to run for the naming of the new company. With the company planned for starting-out on 1 October ahead of a full go-live date of 1 December there just isn’t enough time to run a proper and fair competition – to do anything less than a proper job of it would be a disservice. I’m a little perplexed why the Labour group didn’t include this in the original plans when they were in control for six years?

It remains to be seen whether or not Labour will attempt to bring the same amendment at Full Council.