Volunteer Centre Milton Keynes closes after 37 years

The centre in Buckinghamshire lost its main source of funding from the Big Lottery Fund last year

Volunteer Centre Milton Keynes
Volunteer Centre Milton Keynes

Volunteer Centre Milton Keynes in Buckinghamshire has been forced to close because of a lack of funding.

The centre, which employed four members of staff, closed on Friday.

Annual accounts submitted to the Charity Commission show that the charity had an income of slightly more than £161,000 in 2011/12.

Peter Turner, the centre’s manager, said it had received most of its funding from the Big Lottery Fund, but that had ended in October 2012. He said the centre also held two contracts with Milton Keynes Council that were still running but were not financially viable because they were paid in arrears.

"It’s really sad for an organisation that’s been in Milton Keynes for 37 years," he said. "I personally think it’s shameful that a town the size of Milton Keynes will not have a volunteer centre."

From 1 July the centre’s core volunteering brokerage role will be taken on by Community Action:MK, a charity that supports the local voluntary sector. Two members of staff from the volunteer centre will be employed by Community Action:MK, a third member of staff will transfer to another community organisation and there will be one redundancy, said Turner.

In a statement, Briony Serginson, chair of trustees at Community Action:MK, said: "We were very sad to hear that the city would be losing such an important institution. Their trustees and staff have been passionate advocates for volunteering and Milton Keynes has benefited from their knowledge, skills and expertise.

"We’re pleased to be able to pick up the torch to carry on and develop work around volunteering."

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