Cross-party concerns about Assembly Rooms redevelopment rejected by Labour

October 26, 2017 7:34 AM

At Wednesday's Council meeting, Labour councillors voted on party lines to reject cross-party concerns about the Labour cabinet's handling of the Assembly Rooms redevelopment, after the fire in 2014.

Opposition councillors expressed a wide range of concerns about the state of the project. It was noted that there had been very limited consultation with potential users, and that there were real concerns that the building as proposed could prove wholly unsuitable to their needs.

Furthermore, it was stated that the council lacked both the funds and the capacity to manage multiple large projects - but current plans include both the replacement of the fire-damaged Assembly Rooms theatre and the rebuilding of the Moorways swimming pool.

Cllr Ruth Skelton said "Labour are hiding the facts about the decision to replace the Assembly Rooms from councillors, let alone members of the public. Worse, Labour want to consult in name only with the residents who will actually use the venue.

"Why's the Labour cabinet spending half a million pounds at this stage? We know the Labour council can't deliver a new theatre and a new swimming pool at the same time without going bust. The council must consult with local people on what's actually wanted and achievable. Instead, Labour are presenting an expensive illusion they can't deliver and hoping they won't be caught out before next May's elections.

"We need a Liberal Democrat council that will really listen to Derby people and get to grips with what Derby needs, not this disintegrating mess of a Labour administration."