By Joe Mellor, Deputy Editor
Westminster Council has spent a vast sum of money on luxury limos while at the same time decimating childcare.
The Tory-run council is splashing out on cars while at the same time slashing children’s services.
Westminster council spent £90k on Rolls-Royce Silver Seraph to be used by the Mayor and other esteemed individuals. Additionally, they also spent almost £30k over the previous three years leasing a luxury Audi.
In the last twelve months Westminster council spent nearly £12k on congestion charge fees, and fuel for the two vehicles, both of which are chauffer-driven. These details have been uncovered from a FOI request.
As these elite vehicles sweep through the streets, the same council are set to axe nearly 50 support staff and play workers, due to cuts to youth services.
The plans to save £320,000 over the next two years from Children’s Centres, Youth Provision and Play Provision budgets, means these staff, who provide after school activities to hundreds of children, could lose their jobs.
Labour MP Karen Buck said: “They pay £160,000 on private health care for senior staff and can find cash for a Rolls Royce.
“Meanwhile they are consulting right now on slashing children’s centres, ending their school-based childcare and withdrawing from running a youth service. They need to think again.
“Other councils are doing far better at protecting their children’s and youth services. This is also a question of priorities.
“Spending tens of thousands on chauffeured cars and on private health care for senior staff cannot be justified while children’s centres are closing, school-age childcare being ended and most funding being withdrawn from the youth service.”
A spokesman for Westminster Council said: “At a time of reduced government funding we have to make a number of changes to the way we deliver all our services.
“We’re proposing to change how we deliver services out of Children’s Centres and our broader youth services.
“It is worth noting that Westminster’s Lord Mayor conducts as many as 600 civic duties across the borough in a year.”