Newcastle Labour Party fail our city's young people at the first hurdle

May 22, 2011 10:13 PM

Commenting on the decision of the incoming Labour council leader, Nick Forbes, to abandon the Government's £5M funding for a major young peoples' facility in the city centre, outgoing Council Leader, David Fauklner, commented:

"Labour's first big decision is a very bad decision for Newcastle and for our young people.

At a time of so little public money being available, it's incredible that they are turning down £5m for our city for what could have been a world-class facility.

They are letting down our young people, who were behind this project from the start and helped design the bid.

They have caved in to a very small swimming lobby who had ample alternative opportunities for their needs. They should feel ashamed.

My guess is that Labour has bullied the councils' officers into this decision. I firmly believe that a convincing case could have been presented to the Government, and was in the course of preparation. Yes, given the financial situation now faced by many of the Council's partners in the project, it would have involved some modest Council revenue subsidy to underpin the project - aren't our young people worth that? Our partners YMCA, Barnardos and Streetwise would have confirmed their support for the project - but now they will be as devastated as the young people who have seen this opportunity snatched away. Labour has pulled the rug from under the feet of our young people."