Youth centre to reopen this month

Sidmouth Youth Centre. Ref shs 0825-40-14TI. Picture: Terry Ife

Sidmouth Youth Centre. Ref shs 0825-40-14TI. Picture: Terry Ife - Credit: Archant

Young people, parents and carers will lead the way on how Sidmouth Youth Centre should be run when it reopens this month.

Civic leaders have teamed up with charity Young Devon to restore the service, three days a week at the Manstone Lane hub and say they are on schedule.

Young Devon’s Duncan Cherrett said: “We are delighted to be working alongside the town council to ensure that young people in Sidmouth still have the youth work services that they are looking for.

“The town council really does understand that young people need to have these sessions open to them.”

Tim Tod, the charity’s chief executive, added: “Each organisation got involved in this project for absolutely the right reasons, and I am really looking forward to creating an exciting partnership with the town council that benefits Sidmouth’s young people.”

Devon County Council announced last year that it was to close all 32 of its youth centres to help balance its books.

Sidmouth Town Council stepped in to finance it in December as an ‘early Christmas present’ to the town. It will dip into its reserves to kick-start it for the first three months, after which it will be funded by cash from the town council’s share of the council tax.

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It will then look to work with other groups to maximise the use of the building and cut its costs.

Councillor Ann Liverton, who led the youth centre working group, said: “The council has always worked hard to help and assist young people as much as possible. They are the future of the town. The reopening of the youth centre by the council in such a short space of time and in partnership with a well-established provider, Young Devon, is a reflection of this.”