The Guardian revealed last week that Bassetlaw Council has received a planning application from G4S Children’s Services for a change of use of facilities at Meadow Holme Farm, Stubbing Lane, into a centre for youngsters between the ages of 10 and 17.
Coun Kevin Greaves, for Worksop south, said he was ‘furious’ and said it was almost like they were trying to ‘sneak’ the application through.
Care support worker positions were already being advertised on their website before planning permission had been granted.
Notts County Council bosses have now announced they have agreed with G4S that they will ‘pause’ their purchasing and planning activities to allow for a full consultation with local people to take place.
Steve Edwards, service director for children’s social care at Notts County Council, said: “The council is conscious of the fact that G4S has moved quickly to establish these places and in the light of public concerns we have agreed with them that they will pause their purchasing and planning activities to allow us a undertake a full consultation with local people over the coming weeks.”
“We are very aware that this issue is a sensitive one and we want to listen to the views of local people.”
Youths would stay at the home if they are subject to a court order, are in the care of a local authority, if their parents are unwell, if they experienced family problems or due to foster care breakdown.
Last September the council’s Children and Young People’s Committee approved plans to undertake a procurement process to purchase 24 residential care placements for looked after children.
On our Guardian Facebook page, Trisha Bird wrote: “We need somewhere for vulnerable teens, it’s about time they were looked after properly.”
And Kayleigh Macpherson posted: “I went to a place like this and they are lifesavers.”
“They’re fantastic at what they do, it’s hard to find help at such a young age, especially if you don’t know where to look.”