The ArgusAdur council office closure described as "kick in the teeth" (From The Argus)

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Adur council office closure described as "kick in the teeth"

The closure of council offices has been described as a “kick in the teeth” for residents who will now have to travel more than five miles to speak face-to-face with council officials.

Opponents have described proposals to move all council staff out of Adur Civic Centre in Shoreham into council buildings in Worthing as a merger of Worthing and Adur councils “by the back door”.

A joint statement by the councils this week announced that staff will move out of Adur Civic Centre in spring as the authorities seek to reduce the number of large administrative buildings from three to two.

Both council leaders have been quick to dismiss talk of a merger and say the “radical move” is designed to reduce running costs and improve services for customers.

Concerns have been raised about vulnerable residents having to take bus journeys to Worthing and fears over the loss of face-to-face dealings with people with the removal of council services out of Adur.

Residents can currently pay their council tax and their council home rent as well as discuss housing or planning issues at the civic centre.

The council has promised Adur residents will not lose any services with the loss of the centre with a proposal to add a new wing to the Shoreham Community Centre at Pond Road to house council staff.

Adur council has decided to sell the civic centre site for an estimated £5 million because it says it is too costly to maintain and refurbish.

Work is currently under way at Portland House to create a new customer services hub set to open in spring next year.

The Grade II Listed Worthing Town Hall will also have some limited refurbishment to accommodate back office staff and potentially other community organisations currently housed in the civic centre.

Liberal Democrat councillor in Adur Richard Burt said: “I feel really sorry for the poor people of Southwick and Lancing who have had their local offices closed down before and now they will have to go all the way to Worthing.

“It’s like a kick in the teeth for the people of Adur. Soon we will just become an extension of Worthing.

“This feels like a merger by the back door.”
 

Neil Parkin, Adur council leader, said: “Adur will remain a separate council, with its own councillors and chairman and we will also remain in Shoreham.”

Worthing council leader Paul Yallop said: “This project allows us to greatly reduce the annual costs of office accommodation, helping us meet the challenging financial cuts being passed down from the Coalition government.

“Redesigning our service delivery is a much better option |than cutting front line public services.”

Strategic director Andrew Gardiner said: “In the future council staff will be working more flexibly as desk areas are reduced to save on expensive office floor space, some of which will be offset by income received from renting space out.”

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Comments (12)

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12:16pm Mon 26 Nov 12

Isaac Rinkfern says...

As usual the old "there is no merger" line, do they think we're all as stupid as they are? If it walks like a duck etc.
This whole plan is pathetic, the tax payers of Adur have paid over the years for local council and now our money is being used to improve another town's services. They keep telling us that there will be offices in Shoreham, but keep forgetting to tell us where and when and as for assuring us that we will still have councillors and a chairman, well, we'd rather have something useful instead please.
This was a decision made behind closed doors and the people of Adur have had no consultation whatsoever on this decision to sell everything we own and give all the money to Worthing.
Full public enquiry please?
As usual the old "there is no merger" line, do they think we're all as stupid as they are? If it walks like a duck etc. This whole plan is pathetic, the tax payers of Adur have paid over the years for local council and now our money is being used to improve another town's services. They keep telling us that there will be offices in Shoreham, but keep forgetting to tell us where and when and as for assuring us that we will still have councillors and a chairman, well, we'd rather have something useful instead please. This was a decision made behind closed doors and the people of Adur have had no consultation whatsoever on this decision to sell everything we own and give all the money to Worthing. Full public enquiry please? Isaac Rinkfern
  • Score: 0

1:21pm Mon 26 Nov 12

Ted-Kelly1 says...

Why am I not the least bit surprised? It was completely obvious from the start of the 'merger', that this Council were going to milk the council-tax payers of Shoreham to subsidise services for those of Worthing and then claim to them, that the Council has not had to reduce their services!
Why am I not the least bit surprised? It was completely obvious from the start of the 'merger', that this Council were going to milk the council-tax payers of Shoreham to subsidise services for those of Worthing and then claim to them, that the Council has not had to reduce their services! Ted-Kelly1
  • Score: 0

1:47pm Mon 26 Nov 12

Isaac Rinkfern says...

I expect when Parkin made these quotes he held a telescope between his buttocks and announced "I see no merger".
Obviously he had to remove the telescope first, in order to speak.
Yallop then stroked Parkin and quietly stated, "No Mr Parkin, that's right, now hand over the keys and turn the light off when you leave".
I expect when Parkin made these quotes he held a telescope between his buttocks and announced "I see no merger". Obviously he had to remove the telescope first, in order to speak. Yallop then stroked Parkin and quietly stated, "No Mr Parkin, that's right, now hand over the keys and turn the light off when you leave". Isaac Rinkfern
  • Score: 0

2:43pm Mon 26 Nov 12

alyn, southwick says...

If "the authorities seek to reduce the number of large administrative buildings from three to two" - where are the two buildings that remain - are they talking about Shoreham Community centre, being one of the two?
If "the authorities seek to reduce the number of large administrative buildings from three to two" - where are the two buildings that remain - are they talking about Shoreham Community centre, being one of the two? alyn, southwick
  • Score: 0

2:54pm Mon 26 Nov 12

Isaac Rinkfern says...

alyn, southwick wrote:
If "the authorities seek to reduce the number of large administrative buildings from three to two" - where are the two buildings that remain - are they talking about Shoreham Community centre, being one of the two?
They are keeping Worthing Town Hall and Portland House, just behind Worthing Town Hall.
I think that the Community centre is now run by an independent charitable trust so is not a council building, the council are suggesting that the local office in Shoreham will be shared with the CAB, so essentially a caravan in a car park.
[quote][p][bold]alyn, southwick[/bold] wrote: If "the authorities seek to reduce the number of large administrative buildings from three to two" - where are the two buildings that remain - are they talking about Shoreham Community centre, being one of the two?[/p][/quote]They are keeping Worthing Town Hall and Portland House, just behind Worthing Town Hall. I think that the Community centre is now run by an independent charitable trust so is not a council building, the council are suggesting that the local office in Shoreham will be shared with the CAB, so essentially a caravan in a car park. Isaac Rinkfern
  • Score: 0

3:58pm Mon 26 Nov 12

clubrob6 says...

I think they should still keep a facility to pay your rent and council tax locally,there are plenty of empty shops that could be used even if it was onlt open a couple of days per week.Brighton and hove needs to cut down the buildings they use,plus it needs to sell offices thsts on hove seafront as there is no reason for them to be in such a prime location.I can understand councils wanting to centralise functions but they need to keep facilities local for paying bills.
I think they should still keep a facility to pay your rent and council tax locally,there are plenty of empty shops that could be used even if it was onlt open a couple of days per week.Brighton and hove needs to cut down the buildings they use,plus it needs to sell offices thsts on hove seafront as there is no reason for them to be in such a prime location.I can understand councils wanting to centralise functions but they need to keep facilities local for paying bills. clubrob6
  • Score: 0

4:00pm Mon 26 Nov 12

clubrob6 says...

I think they should still keep a facility to pay your rent and council tax locally,there are plenty of empty shops that could be used even if it was onlt open a couple of days per week.Brighton and hove needs to cut down the buildings they use,plus it needs to sell offices thsts on hove seafront as there is no reason for them to be in such a prime location.I can understand councils wanting to centralise functions but they need to keep facilities local for paying bills.
I think they should still keep a facility to pay your rent and council tax locally,there are plenty of empty shops that could be used even if it was onlt open a couple of days per week.Brighton and hove needs to cut down the buildings they use,plus it needs to sell offices thsts on hove seafront as there is no reason for them to be in such a prime location.I can understand councils wanting to centralise functions but they need to keep facilities local for paying bills. clubrob6
  • Score: 0

4:18pm Mon 26 Nov 12

alyn, southwick says...

Isaac Rinkfern wrote:
alyn, southwick wrote:
If "the authorities seek to reduce the number of large administrative buildings from three to two" - where are the two buildings that remain - are they talking about Shoreham Community centre, being one of the two?
They are keeping Worthing Town Hall and Portland House, just behind Worthing Town Hall.
I think that the Community centre is now run by an independent charitable trust so is not a council building, the council are suggesting that the local office in Shoreham will be shared with the CAB, so essentially a caravan in a car park.
As I thought, in that case they should make one of the two propertiesthey want to keep within the Adur area
[quote][p][bold]Isaac Rinkfern[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]alyn, southwick[/bold] wrote: If "the authorities seek to reduce the number of large administrative buildings from three to two" - where are the two buildings that remain - are they talking about Shoreham Community centre, being one of the two?[/p][/quote]They are keeping Worthing Town Hall and Portland House, just behind Worthing Town Hall. I think that the Community centre is now run by an independent charitable trust so is not a council building, the council are suggesting that the local office in Shoreham will be shared with the CAB, so essentially a caravan in a car park.[/p][/quote]As I thought, in that case they should make one of the two propertiesthey want to keep within the Adur area alyn, southwick
  • Score: 0

4:40pm Mon 26 Nov 12

Isaac Rinkfern says...

alyn, southwick wrote:
Isaac Rinkfern wrote:
alyn, southwick wrote:
If "the authorities seek to reduce the number of large administrative buildings from three to two" - where are the two buildings that remain - are they talking about Shoreham Community centre, being one of the two?
They are keeping Worthing Town Hall and Portland House, just behind Worthing Town Hall.
I think that the Community centre is now run by an independent charitable trust so is not a council building, the council are suggesting that the local office in Shoreham will be shared with the CAB, so essentially a caravan in a car park.
As I thought, in that case they should make one of the two propertiesthey want to keep within the Adur area
That's what any retional person would think, however ADC makes sure not to employ anyone that has more than half a brain, that way nobody asks any tricky questions.
[quote][p][bold]alyn, southwick[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]Isaac Rinkfern[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]alyn, southwick[/bold] wrote: If "the authorities seek to reduce the number of large administrative buildings from three to two" - where are the two buildings that remain - are they talking about Shoreham Community centre, being one of the two?[/p][/quote]They are keeping Worthing Town Hall and Portland House, just behind Worthing Town Hall. I think that the Community centre is now run by an independent charitable trust so is not a council building, the council are suggesting that the local office in Shoreham will be shared with the CAB, so essentially a caravan in a car park.[/p][/quote]As I thought, in that case they should make one of the two propertiesthey want to keep within the Adur area[/p][/quote]That's what any retional person would think, however ADC makes sure not to employ anyone that has more than half a brain, that way nobody asks any tricky questions. Isaac Rinkfern
  • Score: 0

8:11pm Mon 26 Nov 12

rfairweather@tiscali.co.uk says...

Democracy at its best.- Not! Shoreham will be soon be known as the Eastern outpost of God's Waiting Room. Wait for the increase in invalid-buggy road rage.
Democracy at its best.- Not! Shoreham will be soon be known as the Eastern outpost of God's Waiting Room. Wait for the increase in invalid-buggy road rage. rfairweather@tiscali.co.uk
  • Score: 0

10:11pm Tue 27 Nov 12

Simple Surfer says...

Why has it taken so long for everybody to wake up to what has been going on for the last 2 years. The Councillors claim to be in the dark so who have the Council Executives been reporting to during this time or are we expected to believe that this has all come as a big surprise or that the members of Adur District Council have been bullied into this position!! The people of Adur have shown in the past that they do not want to be part of Worthing but our wishes have been ignored. This "merger" has resulted in large scale job losses for staff who have served Adur so well for many years some thank you they all got. Why has there been no consultation or open debate with Adur residents. Even if the residents are shown to completely against any merger it is obvious that we are beyond the point of no return and there is nothing that can be done to stop the process. Remember the voters of Adur put the councillors where they are and hopefully they will hold them accountable for selling us all down the river and give them something altogether different to do with their evenings.
Why has it taken so long for everybody to wake up to what has been going on for the last 2 years. The Councillors claim to be in the dark so who have the Council Executives been reporting to during this time or are we expected to believe that this has all come as a big surprise or that the members of Adur District Council have been bullied into this position!! The people of Adur have shown in the past that they do not want to be part of Worthing but our wishes have been ignored. This "merger" has resulted in large scale job losses for staff who have served Adur so well for many years some thank you they all got. Why has there been no consultation or open debate with Adur residents. Even if the residents are shown to completely against any merger it is obvious that we are beyond the point of no return and there is nothing that can be done to stop the process. Remember the voters of Adur put the councillors where they are and hopefully they will hold them accountable for selling us all down the river and give them something altogether different to do with their evenings. Simple Surfer
  • Score: 0

10:29pm Tue 27 Nov 12

Isaac Rinkfern says...

Simple Surfer, If the local councillors are claiming that they know nothing about this merger, then they are lying.
This is all down to Mr Parkin (google, councillor magazine feb 2010) Adur would be a much nicer place without him and his pals, not one of them is capable of telling the truth.
Simple Surfer, If the local councillors are claiming that they know nothing about this merger, then they are lying. This is all down to Mr Parkin (google, councillor magazine feb 2010) Adur would be a much nicer place without him and his pals, not one of them is capable of telling the truth. Isaac Rinkfern
  • Score: 0

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