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My Norwich

Keeping it in the community

Published on Friday, 1st March 2019

Voluntary groups and organisations have the opportunity to take over a community building – the Cadge Road Community Centre, west-Norwich.

Norwich City Council is offering to hand over management of the building through a process known as a community asset transfer.

This would mean granting a lease to a group or organisation with a reduced or peppercorn rent for the building to be used for community-based or charitable activities.

Councillor Matthew Packer, cabinet member for health and wellbeing said

“This is a well-used community facility that we feel is important to safeguard for the future.

We believe that often the best way of making sure a community facility serves local needs is by making sure it is run by the community itself.

We very much look forward to hearing from groups interested in this significant opportunity that we’re excited at being able to offer.”

Currently the building is run by The Henderson Trust, which provides a wide range of activities such as youth clubs, community lunches and a variety of leisure and social events. These activities will not stop while the process takes place.

For more details about this opportunity, including a full timetable, visit www.norwich.gov.uk/CAT and go to the ‘Current opportunities’ section.

A full pack containing the building plans and an expression of interest form can be obtained by contacting NPS - john.reid@nps.co.uk

Expressions of interest must be received by 9am on Monday 11 March 2019.

More about community asset transfers

At the end of 2015, the council adopted a Community Asset Transfer Policy. This provides a robust framework for the circumstances when community-used land or buildings that are financially difficult for the council to keep or maintain, can be offered to the community, rather than being sold or rented commercially.

Since the policy was adopted, one other property has been made available in this way. This was the building formerly home to Russell Street Community Centre, off Heigham Street, which closed in 2014 following the standing down of the volunteer committee that had previously run it.

In 2015, St Thomas Church was allocated the building for its Sports Factory project, designed to ‘provide healthy community activities with opportunities for all generations to engage in the space and connect socially with neighbours’.

Three years on and the centre hosts regular youth clubs, a weekly Spud Club dinner where families can enjoy a baked potato and a chat with friends and one-off events like Halloween and Christmas parties. The centre is also regularly used to host local residents’ association activities including litter-picks, community meetings and coffee and cake meet-ups.

The project continues to receive the support of council officers.