Trimdon Grange Community Centre could close unless more volunteers come forward (From Darlington and Stockton Times)
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Trimdon Grange Community Centre could close unless more volunteers come forward
2:22pm Monday 4th March 2013 in News
THERE are fears a vibrant community centre may have to close unless more volunteers come forward to help with day-to-day running tasks.
Trimdon Grange Community Centre has been at the heart of the village for more than 40 years and is run by a small, hard-working management committee, who give up their time for the benefit of others.
However, next April, Durham County Council’s asset transfer programme will mean the overstretched volunteers will have to take on even more responsibilities, including internal and external building maintenance.
Fearing it will unable to cope with the extra workload, the committee has issued a desperate plea for volunteers to help ensure the centre’s survival.
Committee treasurer Pamela Duddin said: “It would only involve giving up a few hours a month but it would make such a difference.
“There is a lot going on here at the centre and it would be a huge loss to Trimdon Grange if it had to close down.”
Adrian Orpen, who runs a popular youth club on Wednesday nights, added: “The kids would be devastated.”
The council’s asset transfer programme was agreed last year in the face of unprecedented cuts from central government.
As well as closing some centres and withdrawing further investment, the authority encouraged groups to take over and run venues, with a Community Buildings Grant Scheme set up to ease the financial burden this would entail.
At Trimdon Grange, the committee is putting together a business plan to demonstrate how it will manage in the wake of a transfer but Ms Duddin said it would not be possible without additional help.
“We are nervous about signing the lease as it is such a huge responsibility,” she said.
“We have to prove it will be viable and so we need more volunteers to get on board.”
The committee is seeking volunteers in a range of areas, including: minute taking, helping out with the toddler and youth club, setting up a tea dance, taking bookings, invoicing, organising activities, gardening and IT.
Trimdon’s County Councillor Lucy Hovvels said: “This is the only facility there is for young people in this village, which makes it extremely important.
“It is a place to instil and foster a sense of community spirit. We can’t let it close.”
To find out more contact Ms Duddin on 01429-881724 or visit trimdongrangecommunitycentre.org
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