Manor Road Nursery set to be axed

Manor Road Nursery
Manor Road Nursery

The closure of Manor Road Nusery has moved a step closer after Scarborough Council's scrutiny board backed the proposals.

The plans will see the nursery move to the authority's Dean Road Depot site and will also mean the council buys in plants rather than growing its own.

The council says the move will help it make savings and also provide close to £300,000 in capital gains.

Yesterday's decision came as a bitter blow to the volunteers who fought to save the nursery from closure just three years ago,

in 2014, the former chairman of the Friends of Manor Road Nurseries, Dorothy Russell, led a successful campaign to force the council to retain the site, which grows flowers for displays across the borough.

Last year, the council announced it was investigating the possibility of moving the nurseries functions to the Dean Road depot site, where it would join the new MOT garage for all of the borough's taxis.

A task group was set up, led by Cllr Tony Randerson (Lab), which, following consultation, decided the best option was to move the nursery from Manor Road.

In order to make the Dean Road site usable for nursery purposes close to £400,000 will be spent decontaminating the land on the site.

A 'community and education hub' will also be created in Peasholm Park as part of the move.

The work and the hub will be paid for by the sale of the Manor Road site, which has been estimated at £860,000 and will likely become new houses,

The cost of buying in plants is estimated at £65,000 compared to the current price of £182,000 per year for the council to grow its own plants.

The council's director of finance, Nick Edwards, told the meeting that "the cost of doing nothing" and keeping the nursery where it was would be £900,000 - as Dean Road would still need to be decontaminated and Manor Road would require significant investment to allow it to continue.

He added that the skilled staff would be retained by the authority.

Scarborough Council's cabinet will decide the nursery's future later this year.