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Sunday, 05 July 2015

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Funding crisis at Maryport community centre

Guaranteed funding for Maryport’s Ewanrigg Community Centre must be found if it is to survive.

That was the warning this week from the Ewanrigg and Netherton Tenants’ and Residents’ Association (Entra) which has taken over the centre’s lease.

The move came when a management committee could not be found to run the venue, which is a focal point for community events.

Home Group acquired the community centre from Caritas last year when the charity pulled out of the area.

Attempts were made to find people willing to form a management committee.

When these failed, Entra took over the lease for six months for a peppercorn rent.

But Bill Barnes, Entra chairman, said the venue still required £4,500 a year for running costs and would have to rely mostly on Entra volunteers to manage and maintain it and to supervise activities.

Mr Barnes said that Big Local, an organisation which supports local communities with Big Lottery funding, would be an obvious funding body. It has already awarded the Ewanrigg estate £1 million over the next 10 years to raise aspirations.

Mr Barnes said: “Everything they are hoping to do will require a community centre here.

“We have spoken to the Big Local people who are holding our £1 million and they are considering the matter. I cannot say how vital the centre is.”

Community volunteers and Entra members have already painted the centre and set up community events.

It has also become an educational centre with the WEA and Age Uk running courses.

Mr Barnes said: “The centre will not close down. It has become too important to the community, but we will need help as we can’t go on forever.”

Have your say

This is no different to any other towns that has community centres, not so long ago it was Northside in the news. One of the problems is that these centres only want to cater for the bingo brigade clintele,and that alone cannot sustain centres and is unfair to those of us that want use the centres to further our own lifeskills and qualifications but are unable to do so. Thats what community centres should be about.

Posted by Joanne on 9 January 2013 at 15:50

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