WINCHESTER Town Forum has agreed to carry on making grants to Citizens Advice and Play to the Crowd, which runs the Theatre Royal.

The town forum is part of the city council and its members are councillors representing only the city wards.

The forum agreed to maintain their annual grant to both organisations at £20,000 for the next three years, until 2025.

Speaking generally about financial pressure, Cllr Kelsie Learney, Cabinet member for housing and asset management, said: "The town forum is in a difficult position. We are seeing increased demands from local people for better facilities and for us to look after facilities better than we have been. We need to up the quality of the maintenance."

The forum is committed to giving money for the new cricket pavilion at North Walls Recreation Ground, the new pavilion at King George V ground in Highcliffe and possibly £99,000 for better fencing at the 3G pitch at North Walls.

Cllr Mike Craske said the forum should be looking at the funding from CILs, Community Infrastructure Levy, which is paid by developers. The city council as a whole has £12m in a district-wide fund but a much smaller amount in the town forum CIL fund. He suggested that the disposal of the River Park Leisure Centre site could benefit the town forum.