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‘Springboard are not closing because we were increasing the rent’ says Leader of Crawley Council

Reports that the charity will have to close their Langley Green site because of rent increase are just not true says Councillor Peter Lamb.

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In response to the claims that the charity Springboard would have to close their Langley Green site due to a rent increase by Crawley Borough Council, Leader the Council Peter Lamb has written publicly to address the issue.

Posting on his own blog he says:

“I’m aware that a number of mistruths are being circulated around about this, so in the interests of fairness I thought you might like a true account of events.

When Springboard opened they decided to take on a commercial property at a commercial rent.

“I agreed to look at freezing the rent and guaranteeing the council’s grant funding for a number of years”

At this time all the risks were highlighted to them, but they decided to take on the property nonetheless and various public sector organisations provided grant funding to help set the property up and pay for some of the running costs.

Last year I met with the new chief executive of the charity who flagged up that they were in financial difficulties, that he understood the circumstances under which the charity had taken on the property but they were struggling.

At the time I agreed to look at freezing the rent and guaranteeing the council’s grant funding for a number of years and I was given to understand that that might be enough to ensure the charity’s presence in the town. I looked into it and reported back that we could commit to such an arrangement.

“It is very sad that the charity is closing but it is not though any unreasonable behaviour on the council’s part

When I met with the chief executive again in February I was informed that the charity’s financial position had worsened and that freezing the rent and guaranteeing the grant would not be enough for the charity to be able to maintain its presence in Crawley.

I said that we weren’t in a position to commit to the tens of thousands of pounds in additional funding which were requested, but that we’d be willing to form part of a solution alongside WSCC and the CCG who have legal responsibility for the groups Springboard works with.

For some reason this was not seen to be seen as an acceptable solution and I did not hear anything further until I was informed Springboard were closing.

Springboard are not closing because we were increasing the rent (despite their signing up to that contract), nor because of any cuts to their grant funding by CBC but because their financial position worsened due to the loss of a major donor and Crawley Borough Council were not in a place to make up the gap without the support of the two organisations legally responsible for Springboard’s client group.

It is very sad that the charity is closing but it is not though any unreasonable behaviour on the council’s part, particularly when you consider we were the only organisation which expressed a willingness to help despite having no formal remit to do with Springboard’s work.”

Charity

Crawley nightclub donates almost £8,000 to children’s charity

A Crawley club has donated £7,883 to The Children’s Trust for specialist equipment to help children and young people with complex disabilities.

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L-R: Damian Hillwood (head doorman) Darren Harfield (general manager), Daniel Harding (events coordinator) all from Moka with Georgia Pullman, Corporate Partnership Executive of The Children’s Trust.

Darren Harfield, General Manager of Moka on Station Way, nominated the charity to receive the money for a vital signs monitor and a shower trolley for its rehabilitation centre at Tadworth.

Darren said:

“The donation is from our company’s Echo Trust charity to give something back to our local community. Our customers are always generous when we hold regular collections for the Echo Trust at the club. We wanted The Children’s Trust to benefit because of its amazing support for children and their families.”

The Children’s Trust is the UK’s leading charity for children with brain injury and offers both residential and community-based rehabilitation services to help children to live the best life possible.

The shower trolley enables children with motor control difficulties to be showered safely. The new observation machines are quicker and record vital signs more accurately than previous machines. Speed is important as some children with motor difficulties may not be able to stay still for a long period of time to allow the nurses to carry out observations.

Georgia Pullman, Corporate Partnership Executive of The Children’s Trust, said:

“We’re very grateful to Moka and the Echo Trust as the new equipment will make a massive difference in improving the care we provide to young people.”

Moka is part of The Deltic Group, the UK’s largest operator of late night bars and clubs, which employs 3000 people across 53 venues. Since 2002 when Deltic set up the Echo Trust it has raised more than £2.5 million to grant awards to local children’s charities and children’s hospitals.

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