Marske’s Labour and Co-operative Councillors have secured washing machines for at least 25 residents affected by the closure of Thrushwood community centre.
The small victory comes after a three month long campaign that centred on the closure of a condemned community centre in Marske, which had a small laundrette. As reported in Coastal View Edition 10, the laundrette’s closure would have left people with no washing facilities. Councillors Tristan Learoyd and Sean Pryce argued the case of residents in the Hambleton Crescent area and managed to keep the laundrette open until a resolution was found to the where residents would wash their clothes, it now appears that the councillors have secured a solution to the problems created by the centre’s closure.
Following a series of meetings with Coast and Country, an agreement has been reached which will see residents without a washing machine given one free of charge. Many of the flats concerned have kitchens that are too small for a washer, so Coast and Country have agreed to rearrange the kitchens affected to ensure residents don’t miss out on cupboard space.
“We’re delighted that affected residents will get a washing machine from Coast and Country, but we are disappointed that we have not been able to save the community centre. In the end, we were elected a year too late to save the centre from closure – as the community group and action plans we are establishing with residents needed doing a year ago” said Cllr Pryce.
The centre is now to be demolished in the autumn. Coast and Country have assured the Marske councillors that flats will not be built on the site.
Meanwhile, residents from the Thrushwood area are working with Coast and Country, Councillors Learoyd and Pryce, and council officers to form a community association and devise a community action plan to reverse years of social decline in the neighbourhood. In May, newly elected Councillors Tristan Learoyd and Sean Pryce also established the neighbourhood as a Cleveland Police Joint Action Group area to combat crime and antisocial behaviour.