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Referendum gives Barnoldswick folk a say on School's future

[Thursday 23 March 2006]

It has been at the centre of much controversy recently, and now the people of one West Craven town are to have their say on the future of a disused school.

Residents in Barnoldswick are being invited to take part in a referendum this afternoon (Thursday) on what to do with Rainhall Road Primary School.

Having closed in 2001, the school building was earmarked for use as new Town Council offices, with the funding coming from European and UK Government grants.

But, an eleventh hour decision by the Town Council not to go ahead with the conversion means that the money may not be forthcoming - putting the future of the building in jeopardy.

Councillor David Whipp hopes that the Town Council will take note of the public's opinion expressed in today's referendum, saying:

"Elected representatives have to listen very carefully to what their electors are saying.

"If there's a massive vote in favour of the town council joining in with this project then I think it would bode ill for anybody who didn't listen to that and didn't go along with what people are saying.

"[There's] town council elections next year and I don't think people would forget very quickly if the town council ignore what people in Barnoldswick say."

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