BUILDING work on the Leigh Park Community Centre is set to start in April next year.
After more than a decade of planning, funding for the community centre was secured earlier this year, and a timescale for the build has now been established.
John Rogers, chair of the Leigh Park Community Association said, “We start building around April, there’s talk of finishing around November to December, and we’ll start to put equipment in as they’re building. I’d love to say we’ll be open at Christmas time, but it will certainly be early in the new year.”
Located on land next to Palomino Place, the new community centre will include a large indoor hall which can be subdivided with curtaining doors, offices and rooms, and kitchen and toilet facilities. Persimmon will fund the construction of the whole centre, as a condition of planning permission for housing on Leigh Park.
John Rogers said that the committee is now able to look at how the hall will be run. “We’ve now got the opportunity to make a start,” he explained. “We’ll look at financing, how we structure it; it’s got to be run as a business not a committee.
“We’re already taking bookings! You just look at all the halls in the area – where is there one that is going to be pristine and brand new? I think once that digger gets in and starts digging and the developer puts up a sign, people will realise it’s happening. I’ve waited 12 years and other people have waited just as long, and I’m determined it’s going to be a very nice venue.”
Moving the centre forward
Once the construction of the hall is complete, the Leigh Park Community Association will take on the management of the centre. They are welcoming bookings and expressions of interest from those who are interested in using the hall for their own enterprises. Ideas for uses of the hall include fitness classes, concerts, car boot sales, and a meeting point for local clubs and societies.
The association will also have to raise a considerable sum to buy equipment and launch the centre, and are welcoming donations.
If you are interested in getting involved with the community centre, contact John on 01373 858 377.