Volunteers needed to keep two Peterborough community centres running

Thistle Drive Community Centre
Thistle Drive Community Centre
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Volunteers are needed to keep two Peterborough community centres running.

The city council is appealing to for people to come forward to guarantee the long-term futures of Copeland Community Centre in Bretton and Thistle Drive Community Centre in Stanground.

Each of the centres would need to be operated as a social enterprise by a constituted group who would be responsible for overall management, including arranging bookings for groups, events and parties and generating a profit sufficient to cover day-to-day running costs and on-going repairs and maintenance.

The roles are needed as Peterborough City Council is currently progressing a Community Asset Transfer programme involving 48 community facilities across the city and new management arrangements need to be put into place at each of these locations.

Thw Community Asset Transfer will save the council considerable yearly running costs as it struggles with huge cuts to its government funding.

Cllr Irene Walsh, cabinet member for communities, said: “Nationally over 500 community centres have been closed by councils since 2010. It would be very easy for the city council to follow suit, however, we want to give community organisations the chance to take over the full running of these important community hubs and keep them open.

“We have 48 council owned community facilities in the city all of which have been successfully run by voluntary community organisations for many years. However, at Copeland Community Centre in Bretton and Thistle Drive Community Centre in Stanground we need to find new management organisations as the current groups are no longer able to continue.

“That’s why we are making this appeal and inviting community organisations to come forward to guarantee the long term future of these buildings.”

Anyone interested in taking over the running of Copeland or Thistle Drive should contact Peterborough City Council by emailing cat.enquiries@peterborough.gov.uk. They will be required to complete a simple application form and will then be provided with an information pack about the centre.

If still interested, they will be required to submit a business plan to explain how they would run the centre self-sufficiently for the benefit of the wider community.

The deadline for the return of the business plans is Friday, March 29, 2019.

Further information about the Community Asset Transfer programme is available via the council’s website at www.peterborough.gov.uk.

Copeland Community Centre, Bretton

. One of the busiest community centres in Peterborough

. Has a fully fitted kitchen and servery

. Is licenced for music

. Can accommodate 60 seated in the hall and 25 in the lounge

. Fitted to be able to house a pre-school/nursery

. Is already home to a variety of groups who regularly use the centre

Thistle Drive Community Centre, Stanground

. Very unique, this centre is based in an old farm house and large converted barn

. Contains an arts hub, with lots of sculptures, paintings and graffiti work dotted around the premises

. Established preschool tenant on the first floor of the main building

. Children’s gym academy, housed in a converted barn

. Can accommodate up to 30 people in the community space, 27 children in the day facilities and the gym academy offers further space for hire

. Is already home to a variety of groups who regularly use the centre

. Extension opportunities.