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Dover children's centres set to merge, despite others being reprieved

Two children’s centres in Dover are still set to merge, and the hours will be reduced at a third, under a new proposal put forward by Kent County Council following a three-month consultation.

The latest plan - announced today - will see 11 of the 23 children’s centres earmarked for closure remaining open.

The Daisy and Buttercup centres in Dover will merge on a new site and alternative “outreach accommodation” will be found to replace the Daisy centre.

Hours will be reduced at the Samphire Centre.

More than 6,000 people responded to the consultation and cabinet member for specialist children’s services Jenny Whittle visited each of the centres to see for herself how they served the local communities.

She said: “I would like to thank all the parents who took the time to tell us their views. They came up with some fantastic suggestions about how we could make savings and generate income with ideas such as hiring out the buildings after-hours.

“I have listened to parents and seen first-hand the impact these centres have and, where they are vital to the community, we have found ways to keep them open.

“This consultation has never been about reducing services and these will continue to be delivered in alternative buildings in areas where a centre closes.”

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