Council: ‘No decision’ taken over future of Pudsey Civic Hall

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Under threat: Pudsey Civic Hall. Photo: Ivor Hughes

By John Baron

No final decision has been taken over the future of Pudsey Civic Hall, Leeds City Council has said today.

As previously reported, the council is proposing to close the facility as it seeks to slash £60m from its overall budget this financial year. The proposals have been met with local opposition.

The venue, which was used by over 49,000 people in 2022-23, makes a ‘modest surplus’ but the council says it is consistently failing to meet income targets and is a “financial strain”.

The local authority’s statement follows a post widely viewed on social media which wrongly suggested that a decision taken at February’s full council meeting to approve the authority’s budget for the 2024-25 financial year meant that the facility would definitely close. The post has since been slightly amended.

In a statement issued to WLD, a Leeds City Council spokesperson said the council is still to study the findings of a public consultation into the future of the building, together with any additional correspondence with users and stakeholders of the building.

The spokesperson said: “The council first published initial budget proposals for the 2024/2025 financial year in December 2023 and agreed to start a series of consultations including on the proposed closure of Pudsey Civic Hall.  

“The vote in full council on Wednesday 21 February gave approval to proceed with the various reviews and consultations that are currently under way. No amenities or services will immediately close following the budget vote. 

“The decision to close a service or amenity will be taken in accordance with the council’s constitution via delegated decisions by chief officers, directors, or through a decision report presented to the executive board.

“Pudsey Civic Hall will continue to remain open and honour all existing and any new bookings made until the end of December 2024, which is the earliest point it could close. Before a final decision is taken, the council will study the findings of the public consultation, together with any additional correspondence with users and stakeholders of the building.

“If the final decision to close is taken Leeds City Council staff will work with booking holders and service users to ensure there is a plan in place well before the building closes.”

Tuesday’s amended social media post can be found here. A response from Councillor Peter Carlill can be found here.

WLD covered a lengthy debate on the future of Pudsey Civic Hall from the Outer West Community committee in February here, highlighting both criticism and concerns over the proposal as well as the council’s position.

WLD cutswatch

WLD has also been tracking council budget cuts in its Cutswatch series here.

You can also follow our coverage of the forthcoming May 2 local elections here.

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