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Headteachers come together in last ditch attempt to save Snowdon facility
A GROUP of heads and deputy headteachers in Worcestershire have stepped in to try and save a popular outdoor education centre in Snowdonia. Worcestershire County Council announced last week that its Llanrug outdoor education centre (LOEC) is set to close after a deal to hand over management to a private firm fell through. The centre, which is used by about 1,500 children and young people every year, has been losing the authority money for several years. Despite the council’s plans to hand over the running of the facility to outdoor education company Rock UK, talks fell through after an agreement could not be reached about pension arrangements for its 11 staff. But Clive Corbett, headteacher at Pershore High Sc-hool, said a group of heads were determined to do something about the closure and had several meetings.
“A group of interested school headteachers and deputy heads are getting together to look at what is possible,” he said. “We accept it might not work but we just want to do our best to keep the centre going if that’s at all possible. “It really would be an enormous shame if it wasn’t able to carry on. “We would have to make sure together we could come up with some sort of business plan that could keep it going.” The group of about 15 schools have already had two meetings with another one planned for next week. An online petition launched in support of the centre has already gathered 873 signatures and has attracted the support of Worcester’s MP Robin Walker, who said he hoped all possibilities would be explored before making the decision to close the centre. A spokesman for Worcestershire County Council said: “Worcestershire County Council is currently consulting with staff and other stakeholders over the closure of the centre, until October 16. “This follows a two-year period where we have been inviting alternative provid-ers to come forward. “However if there is someone interested, we are still accepting proposals. Anyone who may be interested in helping the centre stay open can find more information on the E-tendering portal or from Joe Stock, strategic procure-ment officer on 01905 766801.
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