Letter: Appalled at loss of this resource

Todmorden Children's Centre, at Todmorden Community College
Todmorden Children's Centre, at Todmorden Community College

I attended the meeting of Todmorden Development Board last week which discussed the future of Todmorden Community College. After feeling inspired by the exciting proposals put forward by the Upper Valley Renaissance Group in their pre-feasibility study, and heartened by the results of their survey which showed overwhelming support in our town for maintaining the Community College,

I was appalled at what happened next. Despite a vigorous defence of the college by members of our town council, and a clear message in support of this position by the large numbers of members of the public in the room, Calderdale Council members voted to sell the college to Aldi. It will now be nodded through by Calderdale Council Cabinet and that will be it – we will have lost yet another precious community resource.

Calderdale say that they encourage consultation, but on such a massive decision there has been no open meeting, and the survey undertaken by UCVR group was ignored.

Aldi will put some money towards building a new children’s centre and youth service in a building a fraction of its current size. We will lose the sports hall, all the potential for meeting rooms, and the chance to have businesses invest in Todmorden, not to mention the potential for other adult education courses.

The college has also been used in flood situations recently, and is used every year for creative space for children. Exactly where else do Calderdale Council propose all these activities should take place?

Calderdale Council seem deaf to the voices of local people, so perhaps going direct to the company that plan to demolish the college will have more impact – concerned people can write to Mark Taylor from Aldi at property.gol@aldi.co.uk, or Goldthorpe Industrial Estate, Commercial Rd, Goldthorpe, S63 9FA.

N Jackson, Adelaide Street, Todmorden