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  1. ITV Report

Row rages after MP accuses Norfolk children's centre campaigners of 'playing politics'

Several protests have taken place against the plan to close children centres in Norfolk. Credit: ITV News Anglia

Great Yarmouth MP Brandon Lewis has enraged campaigners fighting to keep children's centres open in Norfolk by saying they embodied the "shouty reality" of Jeremy Corbyn's Labour Party.

Norfolk County Council's controversial plan to save £5m by closing 46 of its 53 centres has met with fierce opposition. It says it wants to focus on frontline services rather than buildings.

But critics say communities can't afford to lose a vital service and claim the public consultation has been misleading.

Police had to be called to a meeting of Great Yarmouth Borough Council where the issue was being discussed this week. Protestors in the public gallery had been shouting and had refused to leave.

It prompted MP Brandon Lewis to accuse Labour of playing "party politics".

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The MP's comments sparked a barrage of reaction from opponents.

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A sign at the protest in Downham Market. Credit: ITV News Anglia

Meanwhile, campaigners held another protest against the plan - this time in Downham Market.

They were collecting petition signatures and said closing children's centres would put pressure on other services, including GPs.

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  • Click below to watch a full report from ITV Anglia's Malcolm Robertson.