Uni could save closed community centre


Rory Sheehan

A CLOSED community centre could be reopened, with Glyndwr University being confirmed as its potential saviour.

At a meeting of Caia Park Community Council, chairman Marc Jones revealed the university had shown definite interest in taking over the Kingsley Circle Community Centre.

The centre closed at the beginning of April as part of Wrexham Council cost-cutting measures, and ever since hopes have been high that a rescue package could be put together to save it.

The local authority asked community councils to take over the running of community centres as part of an attempt to find £45 million worth of savings over the next five years.

Cllr Jones said: “I’ve been contacted by Glyndwr University and they have a business plan for the Kingsley Circle Community Centre.
“They have quite an ambitious proposal to reopen it for the community, and use it as a Glyndwr base, a training centre for their youth development work.
“They seem to want to work with other groups, so if they can bring the centre back into use for everyone, it could be a bonus.”

Cllr Jones told fellow councillors no financial support was being sought from the council, and that Glyndwr would be putting its own funding in place.
He added: “What do they want from us? No cash, but support and backing. They will fund it. They have definite plans, and it would be good to support them. I propose we should back any business plan.
“It’s a case of watch this space.”

Councillors were unanimous in their support, with Cllr Keith Gregory adding: “It would be a good use of the building, and it would be good for the people of Caia if it keeps them involved.”

Dorothy Mitchell, chairman of the centre’s management committee, had previously said the closure had been a severe blow for the area.
She expressed her delight at the news a successful takeover could be imminent.
“We’ve been working hard with Glyndwr University and the Caia Park Environment Group for the last couple of weeks and we’re over the moon Glyndwr are showing interest in the takeover,” she said.

“When the centre was closed by Wrexham Council we didn’t give up hope and the community have rallied in their support.
“What we need, and we can’t stress enough, is the users of the centre and local community to get behind the centre if we reopen because this really is a community venture.”

Miss Mitchell added all parties involved would meet next on May 20 to further discuss their business plan.
Glyndwr University was approached but said it would be declining to comment at this time.

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