Help save our Civic Centre

ReGarding Luddenden Foot Community Association’s Asset Transfer Bid to CMBC for the building known as the Civic Centre, Station Rd, Luddenden Foot, for a Community Centre for the district Spring 2011.

LCA put a very detailed and comprehensive bid into CMBC to make their case for the asset transfer of the Civic Centre, Station Rd., Luddenden Foot to the Association preferably on a freehold basis, failing that on a 125yr lease.

This was prepared over a number of months by Jill Smith-Moorhouse Chair and Heather Hartwell Secretary. The LCA has been using the building since 2005 and is now a registered company limited by guarantee.

This building has been a centre for public health and education since it was built in 1914 by benefactors of local mills. It was run by the people for the people, and at one time the West Riding of Yorkshire had child clinics there.

It is the intention of the LCA to continue this ethos and has been doing so since CMBC threatened to close the building in 2005.

A large residents and users group fought the Council to keep it open at that time. It has since been home to Luddenden Guides, Brownies and Rainbows and Luddenden Valley Under 5s Playgroup, a successful registered charity.

The United Reformed Church is based there, and is an umbrella group for the Remembrance Day service and British Legion, also the Boys Brigade who have been in the village for 108 yrs.

The Church has been a Christian presence in the valley bottom and has raised money and supported many local and national charities.

The Womens Institute, a group of 30plus ladies of all ages, has met there monthly for the last 40yrs. They have offered a wide range of speakers and activities from bee keeping to Alzheimers, and the Brontes.

They offer a unique educational and social networking opportunity as do the other user groups. Members say they have forged their friendships over the years and enjoyed a close network of support.

Disappointingly, a rival bid was put in by a local businessman Mr Dal Singh of Hares supermarket Kershaw estate. Officers at CMBC have considered the two bids and decided that they are not strong enough financially to take over the running of the building.

The details of this report can be seen on the CMBC website from Mon. July 11th.Our case will then go before Cabinet for a decision the following Monday July 18th, unless it can be put back.

We are well placed in Luddenden Foot Ward as one of our councillors, Mr John Beacroft-Mitchell, is also a cabinet member. He is therefore in a very strong position to support us and make a very good case for us having the building transferred.

If you would like to support our bid please contact your local councillors John Beacroft-Mitchell, Richard Marshall MBE, and Christine-Bampton-Smith.

The Centre would be a great loss to our area and there is nowhere else suitable for user groups to meet either in Luddenden or in the valley bottom.

This is the very last public amenity available in Luddenden Foot and Calderdale have promised in the Local Development Framework that we should have a community centre.

Jill Smith-Moorhouse

Chair LCA