Budget cuts set to be agreed at a full council meeting next month will include a significant cut to the grounds maintenance budget for bowls clubs.
Hasting Borough Council has been in consultation with the bowls clubs over the recent years to see if club members are willing to get involved with ongoing maintenance costs. The range of options that have been offered by the council include;
· part or full self-management by clubs
· asset transfer of facilities
· reductions in planned expenditure on building repairs
· increased fees and charges
· potential changes to season ticket requirements
Colin Fitzgerald, lead councillor for parks and open spaces said: “We are meeting with the clubs again this week. We are hoping that they will have some ideas for working together to keep these facilities available.
“We think it’s only reasonable to personally inform the clubs about the budget proposals. This will also be an opportunity for another open discussion.”
Andy Batsford, lead councillor for leisure said: “Bowling is a great way to prevent elderly isolation and keep active. We want to make sure we preserve this traditional sporting pastime, but we have to be honest about the fact that we can’t afford the current subsidy for the clubs in Hastings.
“It’s really important to stress that we want to work with the bowling clubs and the larger community to look at ways of addressing the funding pressures we face as a town. The subsidy level for bowling is significant, especially when it is compared to the levels of subsidy that other sports receive.
“I really hope that we can achieve a way forward this week.”
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