Stroud Subscription Rooms are a much loved venue used by those across the whole District that support our important leisure and arts economy. In November last year Stroud District Council launched a public consultation on the future of “Sub Rooms”. The venue cost the council £415,000 last year and it is in the spotlight as a possible source of savings in the light of swingeing cuts to the council’s budget. The town council has applied for the venue to be registered as a community-based group or trust and is keen to safeguard the venue as an arts and entertainment facility.
The Green Party believes the Sub Rooms should remain in public ownership and be run as a community venue serving both the Town and the wider District. We believe that the consultation needs to look at the options for the best service to the community at a price the Council can afford. We welcome the full involvement of the Sub Rooms staff in these discussions and encourage them to continue to speak up. We are deeply concerned about reports of staff being disciplined for airing their views.
This is what austerity looks like, the loss of our Common Wealth. The Sub Rooms uncertain future is due to Tory government imposed austerity measures on the District Council. Instead of receiving money from central government to deliver local services, these funds are being cut and so by 2019/20 our District Council will actually have to pay to central government £0.5 million a year from our Council Tax. It is outrageous.
Eva Ward (Green Candidate for Stroud Central) said “One big message from this is that if we want community facilities like the Sub Rooms to survive we have to support and use them. We call on those of Stroud District to pack out the much loved Sub Rooms nightly and support the venue so it will survive”.