Although yesterdays Merseytravel Budget meeting was dominated by the Mersey Tunnel Tolls, there was an exempt report regarding Merseytravels bid to acquire by lease from Wirral Council the Pacific Road Arts Centre, Taylor Street Museum, and Birkenhead Tramway. This report was heard behind closed doors and without any members of the press or public present. I could not blog about it yesterday, but now it is out in the public domain, I can do so in broad terms.
Back in 2009 Wirral’s Labour-led Council decided to dispose of these assets, accordingly WMBC sought expressions of interest from suitable organisations and in July 2009 Merseytravel submitted their expression of interest. On the 9th December Labour-led WMBC nominated Merseytravel as the preferred bidder. Following that Merseytravel have spent the last 12 months working on this scheme, getting everything in place to take over the lease. A compelling business plan was presented to the members of Merseytravel two weeks ago, and yet yesterday all the 10 members of the Labour Group voted against Merseytravel aquiring this great opportunity for a £1.
A real opportunity for the future missed by the short-sighted, politically motivated Labour group on Merseytravel, apprenticeships, training, performing arts, a tramway, museum, links with University’s, LIPA, and a huge volunteer base all lost! Does this mean the end for Spaceport, the UBoat story and the Beatles Museum? One things for sure, I will continue to do all I can to preserve this asset for future generations and hope that others will join me in doing so, but for now Merseytravel are the losers not Wirral Council.