Community centre appealing for more than £40k to pay for improvements

PUBLISHED: 07:55 17 March 2019

More than £40,000 is needed to keep Worle Community Centre running. Picture: Henry Woodsford

More than £40,000 is needed to keep Worle Community Centre running. Picture: Henry Woodsford

Archant

A community centre is looking for more than £40,000 of funding to carry out 'much-needed' refurbishments.

Signs will be purchased with the money to make the building stand out. Picture: Henry WoodsfordSigns will be purchased with the money to make the building stand out. Picture: Henry Woodsford

Worle Community Centre, in Lawrence Road, needs the cash to make significant changes to the building, which has been in the town since 1839.

The hub is a charity and relies on groups renting out its premises to make money, such as inclusive drama group Fly High Theatre.

Cash will be used to purchase signs to make the building stand out and internal improvements focusing on suitable fire doors and upgrading some rooms to be more modern and accessible to disabled people

Worle Community Centre. Picture: Henry WoodsfordWorle Community Centre. Picture: Henry Woodsford

Community centre secretary Jean Bennett told the Mercury: “We rely on volunteers who help us run sessions and community groups who pay us to use our facilities.

“Some of the groups we get here are vital to the people of Worle as they reduce social isolation and get people out of the house and chatting to others.

“None of us get paid for anything we do here, we put more into it than we get out of it.”

The building was first used as a methodist church in 1839 and later had a school classroom incorporated into its structure.

It was formally recognised as a community centre in 1979 after a residents group was formed, which was replaced by the Worle Community Association, a charitable incorporated organisation which allowed the building to be legally identified as a charity.

Scrabble and boules are played twice each month and an indoor market takes place weekly, where no costs are incurred.

But not enough funds are being generated from these events and community groups to keep the building sustainable.

Association chairman, Tony Dolling, added: “Building surveyors have told us we need to undertake some much-needed improvements, which will cost in excess of £40,000.

“The upstairs section of the main hall has been closed for many years as there are no railings or bannisters in place, the space we have here is vast and there can be an array of activity groups using different rooms at the same time, we just need to get the word out there to people as even those who live in Worle do not know we are here.”

Anyone who would like to get involved with the community centre can call 01934 515681.

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