Headteacher: Crouch End children’s centre “can still have a future”

The headteacher of a Crouch End children’s centre which is set to close in April still hopes that staff will be able to provide much-needed services to children and their parents.

Rokesly Children’s Centre currently offers a place for under-fives to play and learn, as well as giving access to child and family health services.

It will now close as part of a severe round of cuts, which will ultimately leave only one children’s centre in the Muswell Hill, Crouch End and Hornsey area.

Haringey Council has, however, met with staff at Rokesly Children’s Centre and headteacher Grant Bright believes that there is potential for the centre to keep going in some capacity.

“It’s too early to say, but the meeting was a lot more positive than we were expecting,” Mr Bright said.

“We stand by the fact that we want to be part of looking after early years in the borough.

“We’re looking at different community uses and the options that are open to us.”

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As part of sweeping changes to childcare in the borough, Haringey Council is closing eight childcare centres, including Rokesly Children’s Centre in Crouch End, Campsbourne Children’s Centre in Hornsey and Stonecroft’s Children’s Centre in Muswell Hill.

There will be eight centres remaining, all based in or around Tottenham, although the council has committed to opening a new children’s centre West of the borough.

The changes, voted through by Haringey’s cabinet in November, are part of cuts which will allow the council to save approximately £1.4m from its early years’ budget.

The local authority wants to keep children’s centres in the areas where they believe they are most needed, which appears to be Tottenham.

A Haringey Council spokesman said: “We support proposals that would see premises that will no longer operate as children’s centres continuing to provide some services to families.”