Community to buy back centre

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Kirklees Council’s Cabinet this week approved plans to transfer Soothill Community Centre into the power Soothill Community Association.

The proposal was made during a meeting on Tuesday as part of plans which also include the transfer of Skelmanthorpe Council Offices and Paddock Village Hall to other community groups.

It is expected the sale of the sites – which will priced at below market value – will save Kirklees money that it currently spends on upkeep.

Coun Graham Turner said: “These asset transfers have been a huge learning curve, and I hope that these are the first of many.”

Council leader David Sheard added: “I would like to welcome the partnerships we will have with these organisations.

“We will be working with them, and we hope that this will be the model for future community asset transfers.

“We are showing the confidence in local communities by letting them use these facilities.”

The plans were passed by councillors at the meeting.

Officers from Kirklees Council are now expected to complete negotiations and agree terms of the transfer with the group.