Falkirk advice and support hub to get temporary new home

Falkirk Council's central advice and support hub will have a new temporary home in Falkirk Library and the nearby Burgh Buildings before it becomes part of the proposed new council HQ and arts centre.

By Kirsty Paterson
Wednesday, 18th November 2020, 9:01 am
Callendar Square.

The hub has been located in Callendar Square shopping centre, costing the council around £300,000 every year.

With that coming to an end, members of Falkirk Council's executive agreed today (Tuesday) that the hub should be relocated between two council-owned properties - Falkirk Library in Hope Street and the Burgh Buildings in Newmarket Street.

The meeting agreed that a pod in the library will offer a drop-in information service and some face-to-face support with council tax, housing benefit, welfare benefits, debt and housing enquiries.

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The Burgh Buildings will accommodate an appointment-only service, which will include specialist welfare benefits or debt advice and homelessness, rent arrears and eviction queries.

The hub will eventually become a central part of the new HQ and arts centre and although proposals are at an early stage and plans still need to be finalised, it is anticipated that services are likely to be provided in this way for the next three to four years.

Falkirk Delivers, which currently occupies some rooms in the Burgh Buildings, is moving to a new home in Falkirk High Street.

The meeting heard that the hub in Callendar Square has been closed since March 20, due to the Coronavirus pandemic and most customers who traditionally paid in person at hubs have now been helped to find other ways of making payments such as direct debit, online or at a post office.

Councillor Cecil Meiklejohn, leader of Falkirk Council said: “While there is a need to move towards a greater number of digital services that are more efficient for customers, it is recognised that having a town centre presence for our Hub services is still important.

“As we progress our Council HQ & Arts centre plans, having these facilities available on a temporary basis will be a reassurance to many until a permanent location is established.”

Contact details will be added to the Advice & Support Hubs page once services are relocated.

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