DUDLEY Council wants to axe the cafe at its Dudley leisure centre and stop serving hot food at its Halesowen centre. 

The authority proposes to close the cafe at the Duncan Edwards Leisure Centre in Dudley as well as stopping serving hot food at its cafe at Halesowen Leisure Centre after they both "reported significant losses since opening two years ago."

A number of staff are facing redundancy.

The council said it has been subsidising the running costs of the cafes, but this is longer viable due to financial pressures.

It forecasts a £172,000 overspend across the two sites in 2024/25.

It has already closed the cafe at the Crystal Leisure Centre in Stourbridge.

Councillor Phil Atkins, cabinet member for corporate strategy, said: “There is currently a proposal to close the café at Duncan Edwards leisure centre and stop serving hot food at Halesowen leisure centre, as part of the budget proposals for 2024/5.

"Both cafes have reported significant losses since opening two years ago and given the current financial position, the council is unable to continue this level of subsidy.

"It also follows a similar decision to close the café at Crystal Leisure Centre last year with reported losses.

"If approved, it will address a forecast £172,000 overspend across the two sites.

"Regrettably, there is a small number of staff at risk of redundancy but we are making every effort to redeploy them in other areas.

"With regard to Halesowen, it will remain open and we are looking at alternative provision for pre-packaged snacks and crisps as well as hot and cold drinks.

"A vending machine service will still be offered at both sites."

A decision on the budget proposals will be made by councillors on March 4.

The authority is planning to slash spending to cover a £12m deficit in the 2024/25 budget.