Fears for fu­ture of play cen­tre


PAR­ENTS have raised con­cerns over the fu­ture of play ses­sions for chil­dren with spe­cial needs.

Ac­tiv8 is a weekly ac­tiv­ity for chil­dren with ad­di­tional needs and takes place at Fun4All play cen­tre in Mac­cles­field.

But par­ents have been told that the ses­sions – funded by the coun­cil and run by Ev­ery­body Sport and Recre­ation – would be stopped as a re­sult of changes to the pro­gramme.

Ev­ery­body Sport and Recre­ation has of­fered an al­ter­na­tive, fort­nightly soft play ses­sion at Fun4All, but has not com­mit­ted to how long these ses­sions will run. Mum Sue Jack­son, who lives in Mac­cles­field and whose son at­tends the ses­sions, fears the event will be with­drawn com­pletely.

She said: “We’ve been go­ing for nine years and he loves it.

“It’s nice to know there is ex­tra sup­port. It’s like wind down time when he fin­ishes school.

“There’s nowhere else in Mac­cles­field – we don’t want to lose the ses­sions.”

The ses­sions al­low chil­dren of all abil­i­ties to play on the soft-play equip­ment, try out sports or do crafts.

Ev­ery­body Sport and Recre­ation, which has to pay for the use of Fun4All at Queens Av­enue, said the pro­gramme will be ‘re­viewed’ in com­ing months.

An Ev­ery­body Sport and Recre­ation spokesman said the new ses­sions will be a sim­i­lar for­mat to the old Ac­tiv8 ses­sions.

He said: “We com­piled sur­veys with par­ents and fort­nightly ses­sions of soft play was deemed to be a rea­son­able op­tion, en­sur­ing that chil­dren that want to use that fa­cil­ity can con­tinue to do so while al­low­ing us to of­fer other ac­tiv­i­ties to other young peo­ple. The new fund­ing cov­ers a broader range of ac­tiv­i­ties to cater for as many chil­dren as pos­si­ble in­clud­ing ac­tiv­ity hubs, cycling, gym ses­sions and swim­ming lessons.”

A Cheshire East Coun­cil spokesman said: “Ev­ery­body Sport and Recre­ation pro­posed a new, broader pro­gramme which is part of a re-com­mis­sion of short-break ser­vices from Septem­ber.

“Ev­ery­body will con­tinue to de­liver ses­sions on a fort­nightly ba­sis and will re­view this po­si­tion over the com­ing months.”

The junc­tion of Brock­le­hurst Way and Manch­ester Road in Tyther­ing­ton and, in­set above, Nicki Ko­morowski, right, and Tan Payne from Qual­ity Dry Clean­ers

Par­ents fear for the fu­ture of fun play ses­sions for dis­abled chil­dren at Fun4All in Mac­cles­field

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