Lancashire

Blackburn with Darwen Council approves £4m cuts

Protestors outside Blackburn town hall
Image caption Hundreds of people protested against the closures on Thursday night

Blackburn with Darwen council has approved cuts of about £4m as part of plans to save £40m over four years.

The council is trying to save money ahead of the anticipated 25% reduction in grants currently given to local government.

Shadsworth swimming pool will close, but a local school has offered to take over the rest of the leisure centre.

The council's executive board also agreed to merge the management of the local authority and primary care trust.

The authority has decided to withdraw its support for several community centres in the borough.

Jobs lost

Hundreds of people protested against the closures outside the town hall ahead of the meeting on Thursday night.

A spokesman for the council said jobs would be lost as a result of the decisions, but would not confirm how many.

Cuts in other areas are expected to be approved in the coming months, he said.

Council leader Mike Lee said it was "awful" to have to make the cuts and for people to be facing redundancies.

"I really don't enjoy this at all. There is nobody who on the executive board who wakes up in the morning and isn't thinking about this," he said.

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