‘Conflict of interest’ claim over Burnley community centre

Burnley Wood Training and Community Centre on Springfield Road.
Burnley Wood Training and Community Centre on Springfield Road.

A Burnley councillor has defended plans which could see his not-for-profit company move into a Burnley community centre.

Coun. Paul Campbell has come under fire for proposals to set up his organisation Big Light On in the Terracefields community building.

Critics, including Coun. Jeff Sumner who is among those fighting to keep nearby Burnley Wood Community Centre open, believes the potential move could represent a “conflict of interest” and feared a decision had already been made.

But Coun. Campbell said plans were only in the discussion stage and refuted notions it would be a conflict.

He said: “Politics does not come into this at all. We are a community interest company. We are not out to make big bucks we are there to do something to help.

“Terracefields needs help and it needs management because it is not fulfilling its potential at the moment. We would help support the building and keep it open. It is about getting everyone on board and working together.”

Plans are to run the reception, provide training, but keep current community activities running.

Karen Heseltine, of Dall Street Residents’ Association which runs activities at Terracefields, said: “We want the community building to remain for the community run by the community.”

A spokesman for Burnley Council underlined that a decision had not been made, saying: “Council officers are working with any organisation interested in running community activities in Burnley Wood – at Terracefields specifically – and we will continue to do so to put in place positive arrangements for the future.”