Council-run Inspirations Garden Centre faces axe as part of £2.7million cuts

A council-run garden centre looks set to close as part of a further package of cuts totalling £2.7million.

Local Hartlepool Newspaper, The Mail, reported in September how the Inspirations Garden Centre, in Tanfield Road, Hartlepool, was under review by Hartlepool Borough Council in the light of ongoing financial pressures.

Members of the council’s Finance and Policy Committee supported its closure to pave the way for the site to be redeveloped.

A council spokesman said: “It is proposed that Inspirations is closed as despite officers’ best efforts to address the financial performance of this facility it continues to operate at a loss. It has also not been possible to secure an alternative provider to run the café.

“Closure of the garden centre will enable the council to market this site for redevelopment, including the Cemetery Lodge and Car Park.

“Seeking an alternative use for the site will benefit the council financially and the wider community. “A further report on the development opportunities will be brought to a future meeting.”

It follows the closure of the Inspirations Coffee Shop within the former Stranton Cemetery at the end of March after failing to make a profit.

No intended date has been given for the closure of the garden centre.

The planned closure of Inspirations Garden Centre was included as part of departmental savings proposals totalling £2,713,000 for 2018-19 and 2019-20.

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