Platform 51 Centre Closures

Monday 31 March 2014

From Monday 31st March, the three remaining Platform 51 centres will cease operating and the head office in Oxford will close.

These closures mark the final stages of a lengthy process of change which began when the Board of Trustees took a decision in Spring 2013 to withdraw the charity from face to face service delivery and transfer the head office from Oxford to London. 

There were a number of reasons for these decisions which included: 

  • a comprehensive internal and external review commissioned by the Board showed that the charity had lost direction and needed to make substantial changes to meet the needs of young women in the 21st century; 
  • unsustainability of the financial and operational model

In November 2013, approximately 75% of Platform 51’s service delivery work was transferred under TUPE regulations to Changing Lives (formerly The Cyrenians), a charity with similar values and ethos to Platform 51’s.  However, for strategic reasons, Changing Lives did not take on three of Platform 51’s centres in Southall, Tonbridge and Bristol. 

Despite efforts to find alternative providers for these services, none were found within the time frame and the decision was therefore taken to implement a gradual closure.

Girls and women who access these services and who are still in need of support have been assisted to find suitable alternative services in their area.

The Trustees regret that the closures have led to redundancies and appreciate that this has been a difficult process for many of those involved. The charity is grateful for the huge contribution made by the staff during this time.

Platform 51 is now operating under the name of Young Women’s Trust.  To learn more about the work of the charity, please click here