TADLEY residents are being urged to cast their vote in a parish poll about the funding of a new Youth Centre.

The poll, which closes at noon on April 1, is asking residents whether the Town Council should borrow £250,000 to assist with the funding for the proposed facility.

Adrian Noad, chairman of Tadley & District Community Association (TDCA) one of the bodies behind the scheme, said: “We’ve been asked why existing halls in Tadley can’t be used. We want residents to understand our project is about providing an informal venue for our town’s youngsters.

“We are not talking about youth clubs that can pitch up for a couple of hours once a week in a hall somewhere – we already do that at the community centre.

“We want to be open once school finishes each day until 9pm and throughout the school holidays. That’s something we need a dedicated facility for.”

He said those supporting the new centre also hoped to work with partner agencies to deliver counselling services around issues such as alcohol, drugs, sexual health, bereavement and being a young carer.

Avril Burdett, vice-chair of TDCA, said: “The land that has been given to the Community Association is likely to be landlocked in future years so we only really get one opportunity to construct this facility on this scale.

“We would urge those who haven’t yet voted and who share our desire to provide this much-needed facility to vote ‘yes’ and ensure their ballot paper is returned before April 1.”

As previously reported in The Gazette, if approved, the council would borrow the money from the Public Loans Board and pay it back over a period of 15 years by raising the council tax.

The total cost to a band D household over the course of the loan would be about £40, approximately £3.63 a year.

The new facility would be built in an area of land adjacent to the community centre, in Newchurch Road.