Purfleet Childrens’ Centre Closure “Stay of Execution”

A PURFLEET play centre leader has blasted a “woeful and insensitive” at Thurrock Council after she was told over the phone that funding would be cut “with immediate effect”.

Tracey Luck, 38, her voice still breaking with emotion, took YourThurrock through the story of how a “total stranger” from the council came to the centre, spoke to parents and made an assessment that funding was to be cut from the centre at St Stephen’s church in London Road, Purfleet.

Among the reasons given was that Purfleet was no longer a (Phase 1) deprived area and so no longer entitled to funding.

In 2006, Purfleet was identified as having the highest number of County Court Judgements in the United Kingdom.

On tuesday, Ms Luck told an emotional gathering of the hundreds of families at the centre that it was under threat but the story changed when the council called for a meeting next day.

At the meeting, the council announced that Purfleet was a (Phase 1) area of deprivation and so the centre would be entitled to temporary funding.

Ms Luck is battling on and considering her position but others have slammed the council for the lack of consultation.

Rev Andy Hudson, of St Stephen’s Church, said: “I’m incensed with how the council pulled the funding with no negotiation.

“We have a stay of execution but will continue to explore every possibility.”

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