IT IS a facility in Ryedale that is needed more than ever as the recession begins to bite – but one that had to cut its service because of a funding shortfall.

Now Ryedale Citizens Advice Bureau (CAB) – which has been closed on the last two Wednesdays – has revealed it is hoping to return to normal by the beginning of next month, after receiving £9,500 from Ryedale District Council. CAB, which is based in Wentworth Street, Malton, but which also operates at Pickering library, said it would be open this Wednesday, albeit on a limited basis while the staff rota was re-organised. CAB services are normally available every weekday, apart from at the library, where an outreach facility runs on Tuesday mornings.

In December, it was announced that CAB, which was established in 1979 and deals with more than 7,000 cases a year, was facing a funding shortfall of £18,000.

But it has managed to raise about £6,500, and also got about £4,000 from North Yorkshire County Council. District councillors unanimously voted to release the £9,500 at a full council meeting on Thursday.

Sue Bywater, manager of CAB, said: “I think Ryedale council have done the right thing, and I applaud them for doing the right thing. We have a very, very good relationship with our local authority on many levels.” She stressed that CAB had done its best to raise as much funding as it could. “There’s been an awful lot of effort gone on by me and our colleagues across the board,” she said. “We’ve done as much as we can individually to raise about £6,500.”

A report by district council officers, which was considered by the councillors at the meeting, said: “The demand for the services of the Ryedale CAB has already seen an increase with the current difficult economic conditions. They expect to see a further increase especially after Christmas. The bureau expects significant increases in both employment and benefits-related inquiries over the coming months. Experience has shown that early intervention, especially in debt cases, can prevent serious consequences occurring.”

CAB helps people resolve their legal, money and other problems by providing free, independent and confidential advice, and by influencing policymakers. It is a charity reliant on trained volunteers and funds to provide those services.