Poulton community centre re-opensPublished Monday, 14 November 2016
A community group in Poulton has opened the doors to a newly refurbished and independent day centre in the town.
Wyre Council has worked with Teanlowe 60+ Group to transform Teanlowe Day Centre into an independent community centre and at the same time make use of the remainder of the building, which had previously been under-used.
Under the new arrangements the group occupies part of the building and will pay reduced rent alongside running costs, lowering the council subsidy and freeing up the remaining part of the building for commercial let.
Councillor Alan Vincent, Cabinet member with responsibility for asset management at Wyre Council, said: "I'm very pleased we've been able to safeguard the Teanlowe 60+ Group, enabling them to continue providing their service from the building and at the same time improve the financial position of the council.
"The council recognises the excellent work undertaken by the group and how valued it is within the community. We now have an independent community space for the over 60s and a good sized and well positioned retail unit that we are currently in the process of marketing with much interest."
Refurbishment work includes new entrance doors, creation of a bright and modern entrance hall, new store room and brand new toilet facilities including a toilet for the disabled. The interior has been plastered and decorated to provide fresh and welcoming surroundings.
The group provides regular drop-in social gatherings for older members of the community at the venue, to help prevent people from feeling lonely and isolated. It now hopes to attract new members and plans to hire out the venue for local meetings and events.
Councillor Barry Birch MBE, Teanlowe 60+ Group Trustee, said: "One of the main things we're hoping for under the new arrangements is to attract new members. My view is that 60 is no age at all nowadays and, although we have a good mix of ages attending, we need younger members to support perpetuity of the group. We also want to expand and develop the services available and, in order to make the centre pay for itself, plan to hire it out for parties, meetings and events at very competitive rates."
A number of volunteers from the local community help the centre to function on a day-to-day basis. Ann Martin, who is a trustee and volunteer, has been attending the group since 1974 when she used to bring her mother. She commented: "I would encourage anyone to pop in, any time. Everyone is so friendly and there are always volunteers on hand to talk to new members and introduce them to others. The best thing about the group is the community spirit. Events and celebrations are shared within the group and everyone is made to feel welcome."
The Mayor of Wyre, Councillor Terry Lees, officially opened the centre this morning at a special event attended by group trustees and members, volunteers, local businesses, Age UK Lancashire and local councillors.
Teanlowe 60+ Group meets at Teanlowe Day Centre, Queensway, Poulton, Monday to Friday, 10am until 1pm and Saturdays, 10am - 12 noon. Members of the community from across Wyre are welcome to drop in at any time for a drink and a chat.
Anyone wishing to hire the venue should contact Phil Howarth on 01253 890197 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Pictured: (L-R) Councillor Peter Gibson, Leader of Wyre Council; Phil Howarth, Teanlowe 60+ Group Trustee; Ann Martin, Teanlowe 60+ Group Trustee; the Mayor of Wyre, Councillor Terry Lees; Erin Creswell, Teanlowe 60+ Group Volunteer; Councillor Colette Birch; Councillor Barry Birch MBE; Stephanie Tufft, Chief Executive of Age UK Lancashire