Members of the scrutiny committee voted against Labour group leader Jim Grant's bid to ‘call in’ the cabinet decision to close Apsley House – which would have had the effect of delaying the decision.

Coun Grant wanted to put a pause on the  cabinet decision to allow more time for officers and the cabinet member for culture and leisure Robert Jandy more time to speak with South Swindon Parish Council to keep Apsley House open.

He said: “If this decision goes ahead, Apsley House will close. You’ve just started talking to South Swindon Parish Council about seeing if they can help to keep it open, and there won’t be anything to talk about, because the decision is made to close it. What are you going to discuss? Nothing.

“Calling the report back in would give another month to see if those talks can go anywhere.”

If the motion has passed officers would not have been authorised to investigate the cost of exhibition spaces at the cvic offices. Conservative councillor Russell Holland said it would just delay things and the costings would not be available at the next meeting, and the issue could not progress. The motion was defeated as the committee split on party lines.