Historic community hall is back in public use

Delighted residents attended the reopening of Carpenter Hall community centre this weekend, bought back into public use with help from by Telford & Wrekin Council’s Safer & Stronger Communities project.

Historic community hall is back in public use

The project aims to create a borough where everyone feels safe and where opportunities to be involved in community groups, exists.

After consultation with residents, the Safer & Stronger Communities project sourced a range of funding to renovate the hall, create a new booking system and install a kitchen to make the building suitable for groups locally to hire. Examples of groups already interested include a youth club, bingo evenings along with a parent and baby group. 

Paul Watling (Labour) Cabinet Member for Safer and Stronger Communities said: “I can see it in people’s eyes, the hopes and plans for the future and the positive impact having this facility back in community use will make as it was originally intended. 

“Many at the opening have talked about the isolation Covid created and today marks a really poignant new beginning for this building. We’re delighted to have been instrumental in helping bring people together. 

“I hope and can already see how this centre will enable vital support for all sorts of people from young families looking to connect with others in the same situation, youth clubs for young people to seek advice and a safe place to hang out with friends as well as for older people looking for social activities to reduce loneliness. 

“It’s been a very positive step in the direction of showing people we are on their side and creating a safer and stronger community.”

The Safer & Stronger Communities project is led by Telford and Wrekin Council with support from the Police and Crime Commissioner (PCC) John Campion. 

Funding has been made up with support from Ketley and Overdale Councillors Amrik Jhawar (Labour) and Eileen (Labour) both contributing £1,000 from their Pride funds, along with £15k from the Safer & Stronger Communities project and also the council’s property development team, known as ‘biT’. 

The joint initiative will see Telford & Wrekin Council contribute £2m and an additional £500k from the Police and Crime Commissioner, John Campion invested into areas of Telford over the next two years.

The Carpenter Centre is named after local resident Betty Carpenter, who, along with other family members and residents in the area, raised money to build a community building in the area, as no such facilities existed there at the time.

In 2012 The Linden Centre, a specialist primary setting for up to 16 children with social & emotional needs, moved into the building making it difficult for community groups to use the centre. 

It’s easy for residents to get involved, simply email Saferstronger@Telford.gov.uk with any issues you would like to raise in terms of safety such as requests for CCTV or improved street lighting or if you would like to create a group that supports your community such for example a youth club, gardening group or book club. 

One of the project coordinators will be in touch to offer support, guidance and in some case funding to get your project off the ground.  

To book the hall visit the website.