Campaigners gear up to re-open Wellingborough day centre

Heather Saunders, Sarah Gouffini, Cathy Homann and Gary Saunders receive the keys to Glamis Hall in Wellingborough. January 2015
Heather Saunders, Sarah Gouffini, Cathy Homann and Gary Saunders receive the keys to Glamis Hall in Wellingborough. January 2015

Volunteers have a busy few days ahead as they prepare to re-open the community centre they fought so hard to save from closure.

The Glamis Hall for All group finally got the keys to the hall on Wellingborough’s Queensway estate this week and are now preparing to welcome people through the doors on Monday for the first lunch club under its new management.

Wellingborough Council decided to close the 40-year-old building last year, saying it was no longer fit for purpose.

But months of campaigning and collecting more than 10,000 names on a petition to keep it open paid off as the campaigners were able to persuade the council to transfer the building to them.

Glamis Hall for All chairman Heather Saunders said: “It has finally all come together and we are going to do this.”

Heather said getting the keys was similar to moving into a new house, trying to discover which keys open which doors and working out what needs their attention first.

But the volunteers are keen and will be having a dry run this week in preparation for serving the first meals of the new lunch club next week.

Heather said: “We are ringing round people to say we are finally opening on Monday. We are not expecting too many people down here, but there will be a few.

“We just need to get people back into the swing of coming down here.”

While they already have a team of volunteers, they would love more people to volunteer for cleaning, driving, serving lunch and organising activities for the users.

Heather said: “We have got a list of different roles which we are going to be advertising in the next couple of weeks to get our numbers up for when we get more people here.”

As well as transferring the building over, councillors approved a one-off grant of up to £250,000 to repair and refurbish the building.

Heather said they plan to take it room by room, with a long-term aim of making the building more energy efficient and sustainable for the future.

The lunch club, which will offer a three-course meal and activities, will run Monday to Friday.

For details go to www.glamishall.org.uk or call 07500 530797 instead of the the hall’s landline, which is not in use.

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