TAUNTON Deane MP Rebecca Pow has claimed the Conservatives will continue to fund youth services following a grant to YMCA Taunton.

Her Liberal Democrat rival however, is not so sure.

The news comes after YMCA Taunton received a share of £90million from the Government's Youth Investment Fund, which benefits over 140 youth projects across England.

Ms Pow has revealed the share which went to the local YMCA amounted to £2,107,714, which will reportedly help the centre to improve its facilities with a new indoor climbing hall, catering training facility, chill-out zone, music and media production room, and a large new event space.

Speaking on the grant, Rebecca Pow said: “Youth centres can play a key role in supporting young people across the country, especially those who may otherwise fall through the cracks or begin engaging in anti-social behaviour.

“I welcome this additional £2 million pound of investment for Taunton. As the Conservative Government continues to provide support for young people in Taunton Deane.

“By sticking with the plan under the Conservatives, thousands of young people across the country will continue to gain the vital skills needed to succeed in life and work, delivering a brighter future for this generation and the generations to come.”

In response, Gideon Amos, the Liberal Democrats' Parliamentary candidate for Taunton and Wellington, said it was thanks to Taunton Town Council that there is funding for youth services in the town, and attributed the government's donation to the upcoming general election.

“It’s over a year ago now that the YMCA published ‘A decade of cuts to youth services’ covering the last ten years under the Conservatives, so it’s thanks to our new Lib Dem town council that there’s a budget for youth provision in Taunton at all," Mr Amos said.

"Why it has taken the Conservatives over a year to respond to the YMCA call and provide these vital funds I have no idea - unless it has something to do with the coming General Election. 

"It would have been better if youth services hadn’t been dismantled in the first place”.