A GROUP fighting to save the South Cerney Outdoor Education Centre (SCOEC) has admitted defeat in its battle to save the facility.

The Lake 12 Partnership has been campaigning against Gloucestershire County Council’s (GCC) sale of the centre for the past eight months.

The group has now withdrawn its plans to buy and run the centre and has instead offered to scrutinise any offers from potential buyers.

SCOEC was put on the open market as a going concern last month and GCC has now published its plans to sell it for more than £875,000.

Lake 12 Partnership chairman Jeremy Ackroyd said the group wouldn’t be able to raise the money to buy and run the centre.

“We had offers of support from a range of public and sporting figures to whom we are immensely grateful, but the Council are clearly looking to make as much money as possible in selling off the centre,” he said.

“We didn’t think it was right to ask the general public to put their hands in their pockets to buy something that, as taxpayers, they already owned.

”Instead the Partnership is now offering to work with the Council by acting as voluntary consultants to support and advise the Council in its negotiations with the commercial bidders that are expected to submit their offers for the centre towards the end of this month.”

The centre is being marketed by Savills and bids must be submitted to them by October 31.