Partly Cloudy

Partly Cloudy

max temp: 20°C

min temp: 15°C

Search

Lakenheath: Big step forward for community centre bid

08:25 06 June 2014

Archant

A village dream to build a state-of-the-art community centre looks set to become reality after campaigners won a bidding war to purchase part of the site.

The ambitious plans behind the People’s Project in Lakenheath have taken a crucial step forward after villagers’ officially bought the village’s old Royal British Legion hall.

The hall is now in the hands of the trustees of the Peace Memorial Hall next door, and the long-term aim is to merge the two halls into a centre of excellence for all the village to enjoy.

The project appeared in jeopardy as campaigners struggled to raise the £120,000 needed to buy the hall, but were handed a reprieve when the Christian Fellowship Foundation poured money from the sale of the Lakenheath Village Home back into the project.

While the hall has now been purchased, villagers must now prepare to raise the money to fund the building work, which project leader Brendan Fulham said could cost up to £500,000.

“Now the hard work of fundraising to finance the project begins,” said Mr Fulham.

“We are under no illusion it is a monumental task we have before us, but if we have the same resolve as has existed during the bidding stage we should win through and produce a village centre of excellence for Lakenheath folk.

“We will pursue every available avenue to seek grant aid funding and, because we have shown such commitment to buying the site, I am sure it will stand us in good stead with the agencies we will apply to.”

The Royal British Legion hall in the High Street had stood empty since shutting in August 2012, and looked set to be sold to the highest bidder.

However, a campaign spearheaded by resident Mr Fulham saw an embargo placed on the club’s sale by Suffolk County Council under community right to bid legislation, which gives community groups six months to raise funds to buy assets of community value.

While the fundraising effort secured tens of thousands of pounds, the project looked set to fall short before the April deadline.

However, Forest Heath first stepped in to provide a safety net of up to £75,000 should the campaigners fail to raise the money, although the funding was secured with the intervention of the Christian Fellowship Foundation.

For more information about the project or to get involved email Mr Fulham at chairlpmh@hotmail.com

0 comments

Welcome , please leave your message below.

Optional - JPG files only
Optional - MP3 files only
Optional - 3GP, AVI, MOV, MPG or WMV files
Comments

Please log in to leave a comment and share your views with other Ipswich Star visitors.

We enable people to post comments with the aim of encouraging open debate.

Only people who register and sign up to our terms and conditions can post comments. These terms and conditions explain our house rules and legal guidelines.

Comments are not edited by Ipswich Star staff prior to publication but may be automatically filtered.

If you have a complaint about a comment please contact us by clicking on the Report This Comment button next to the comment.

Not a member yet?

Register to create your own unique Ipswich Star account for free.

Signing up is free, quick and easy and offers you the chance to add comments, personalise the site with local information picked just for you, and more.

Sign up now

12-20 Upper Orwell Street, which could be demolished and regenerated if plans by the East of England Co-op go through

A derelict building in Upper Orwell Street which has been empty for decades could be set for demolition if new plans for the area are approved.

Stoke Bridge Telephone Box, Ipswich.

A campaign has been launched by the Teapot Project in Ipswich to save the Stoke Bridge telephone box and turn it into a hub providing for vulnerable people.

GB Paralympic swimmer, Ryan Crouch, is pictured at Crown Pools in Ipswich.

The Olympics may have finished but the Games are not over yet – next month it is the turn of the Paralympics to take over Brazil.

The EACHFest event held for service users of East Anglia's Children's Hospices and their families

Young people with life-threatening conditions were treated to their very own festival by East Anglia’s Children’s Hospices (EACH) recently.

East Anglian Air Ambulance

A man was airlifted to hospital after a crash in Stowmarket yesterday.

Actor and writer Mark Gatiss visited the Riverside Theatre, Woodbridge, in August as part of its Riverside Nights programme

A cinema has revealed plans to install a second screen – 100 years after it opened in a Suffolk town.

Jo Rothery's garden is plaqued by slugs. Her Earl Soham garden is set to feature on ITV's Garden Nightmares.

A Suffolk gardener who has been waging war on ‘cannibalistic’ slugs for the last four years will be sharing her Garden Nightmare with the nation this week.

Police thanked the public for their help

A man missing from Lowestoft has been found safe and well.

Alexanders College at Bawdsey

A boarding school is closing after more than 20 years of educating international students in east Suffolk.

Abellio Greater Anglia

Rail services between Ipswich and Lowestoft via Saxmundham have been delayed because of a bridge fault.

Most read

Most commented

HOT JOBS

Show Job Lists

Topic pages

Streetlife

Newsletter Sign Up

MyDate24 MyPhotos24