Funding cut for Oxfordshire council children's schemes

Planned improvements to 14 pre-schools and children's centres in Oxfordshire have been scrapped as a result of government cuts.

The county council said it was forced to cancel the projects after the government cut £2.75 from its £14m budget for Sure Start initiatives.

Twenty-six projects had been under review - nine children's centres and 17 nursery and pre-school ones.

Twelve of the schemes will still go ahead, a spokeswoman said.

Councillor Louise Chapman said: "I share the disappointment of those who can't now go ahead with their projects and I really do sympathise but this is the financial situation the whole country faces and there are difficult decisions to be made.

"Amongst the criteria considered for those projects which are going ahead was those capable of completion by March 2011 and in the case of pre-schools, looking at where there was a real need for places in particular areas.

"I realise that is little comfort to those who have been disappointed but there simply isn't the money to pay for everything now."

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