Greens warn of cuts to Surrey youth services

Green County Councillor Jonathan Essex has today criticised Conservative-run Surrey County Council for planning to reduce youth services, including youth workers and youth clubs, in Reigate & Banstead and across the county.

At a recent County Council meeting, the Conservative Cabinet admitted via a written answer that the number of hours of youth service provision each week in Boroughs and Districts across Surrey are planned to be reduced.

The biggest reduction iis proposed in Reigate & Banstead, with 50 hours of youth work lost each week.

The cuts follow the admission that the Conservative-run County Council is looking to make savings of nearly £200 million by the end of 2019/20.

Green County Councillor for Redhill East, Cllr Jonathan Essex said:

“Investing in our young people in Surrey is absolutely crucial to help keep them safe and to give them the opportunities and life experiences to grow up into well-rounded adults. The Conservative County Council cannot continue to keep slicing away at funding for vital services like these and then express surprise when costly interventions occur further down the line. I am particularly horrified that Reigate & Banstead is suffering the brunt of the cuts when what is needed is more local provision and resource, not less.”

Hal Brown, who is the Green Party candidate for Earlswood and Whitebushes, in this month’s local election,  said:

“Alongside youth centres, the County Council is planning to axe millions from its Early Help budget which could see Children’s Centres close across the county. These centres help parents and their children access services and provide support to those who may be struggling. By cutting such crucial intervention at all stages of a child’s life, I am really worried about the effects on young people in Surrey and am calling on the Conservative Cabinet to re-consider this highly damaging cuts.”

Cllr Essex’s Cabinet question and the answer received can be found here:


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