North East Wales

Clwyd Leisure takes legal advice on leisure sites funding

Rhyl Sun Centre Image copyright Google Street View
Image caption The trust runs the Sun Centre, Nova Centre and North Wales Indoor Bowls Centre

Trustees of three Denbighshire seaside leisure sites say they are taking legal advice after councillors decided to withdraw £200,000 in funding.

Clwyd Leisure said it would not be able to operate its facilities like Rhyl's Sun Centre if its subsidy was cut.

It had called on Denbighshire council to take it over, along with Prestatyn's Nova Centre and the North Wales Indoor Bowls Centre.

But the council said it was withdrawing cash support from April.

In response, Clwyd Leisure released its statement on Wednesday saying it will take legal and financial advice before deciding what to do next.

The trust said: "It is our belief that there is a protected funding agreement between both parties (Clwyd Leisure Limited and Denbighshire County Council), and this has been referred to our legal advisers."

Clwyd Leisure is a not-for-profit trust set up by Denbighshire in 2001 to run facilities on its behalf, but last year the trust warned that repeated council cash cuts could not be sustained.

Denbighshire council said the trust knew about the phased cuts three years ago but the trust said that if a planned cut of £50,000 went ahead then it may have to shut facilities.

'Serious concerns'

A meeting of Denbighshire councillors was held on Tuesday where they rejected the trust's suggestion of taking back control of the services staffed by 70 permanent and 55 seasonal workers.

And they went a step further saying they were withdrawing further funding.

After that cabinet meeting, the council said the remaining £200,000 grant that would have been provided to Clwyd Leisure in 2014/15 will now be used to promote leisure, tourism and events for the coast.

Its statement said: "This cabinet decision is based on a detailed analysis of the position of Clwyd Leisure Limited.

"In fact, the council has been looking at the future of Clwyd Leisure for several months, in partnership with the company (and at their request) and this process highlighted serious concerns about the way the company was being run and the operation of the facilities."

Clwyd Leisure trustees are due to hold a board meeting on Thursday to discuss the next steps.

They said their commitment has always been to keep the facilities open for the community.

Over 3,000 people have joined a group on Facebook calling for the services to be kept open.

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