Both events occurred when Mark Rogers (now Birmingham’s Chief Executive and Director of Economy) was at the helm.

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The renowned Brasshouse Language Centre, part of Birmingham Adult Education Services, and its landmark Birmingham building, has been under threat.

One of the Birmingham City Council officials – charged with tackling the massive local authority financial deficit – said that the building does not have ‘long-term viability’.

In May, students contacted the Post, claiming the centre was being starved of funds, that quality was in decline and that senior management figures were not being replaced. Entrepreneur Simon Nicholls said he strongly opposed the council cutting senior posts at the Brasshouse by 50% and a spokeswoman for Birmingham City Council admitted some staff had not been replaced, but was unable to provide exact figures.

Sheila Ward said:“There has been an increasing feeling that it was being allowed to run down deliberately to the point where someone, at some stage, would declare that it could not continue. Many might say that the building is possibly the least of the problems faced by Brasshouse. There has been a totally predictable reduction in the range and levels of languages on offer which can be attributed to decisions taken by those with little knowledge of or apparent interest in the valuable contribution the work of this centre can make to the regeneration and development of international trade in the whole region”.

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The Brasshouse, which currently offers training in 30 languages, will operate as Brasshouse @ Library of Birmingham following the move in September 2016. The move will secure the future of the Brasshouse centre, which caters for 7,000 students and should improve the viability of the ailing Central Library project.

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