Medway Labour and Cooperative Group Continue to Fight for UCA in Medway

Today Medway Labour and Cooperative Group responded to Medway Council’s claims that the council were working to retain the University of the Creative Arts Rochester campus.  Cllr Clive Johnson raised a special item at yesterday’s (Thursday) Regeneration, Culture and Environment Committee.  That item called on the council to fight hard to retain the UCA campus by conducting urgent talks with the UCA, by exploring options for accommodation within Medway and by brokering partnerships with arts, educational and other organisations.  Council officers maintained that discussions had been on-going since the shock announcement of the proposed closure.

Cllr Clive Johnson, Medway Labour and Cooperative Group Spokesperson for Children’s Services, said:

‘It has been inspiring to hear the stories of former and current students and staff of the University of the Creative Arts in Medway and learn how their lives have been transformed by the distinctive creative education they received.  I welcome the consensus that there was at the meeting across the council for the urgent need to ensure that the UCA Rochester campus, together with the vital Further Education provision, are retained within Medway.  We will continue to press the council to do absolutely everything it can to ensure this historic cultural and educational presence remains for future generations of Medway residents.’

Cllr Vince Maple, Leader of Medway Labour and Cooperative Group, said:

‘The future of the University of the Creative Arts in Medway is still very much in doubt.  The loss would be a tragedy for Medway, losing vital skills education, high quality jobs and, in the year we launch our City of Culture bid, for the cultural and creative vitality of our community.  The creative industries are central to our national economy and are growing faster than the wider economy.  We need Medway to be positioned to benefit and the continued presence of the UCA is vital.  We want to see Medway Council invest in our community in order to save the economic, cultural and creative future of our community.’

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