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Welney hopes for new community centre

Welney Cricket Pavilion and Recreation Fields ANL-150804-183210009
Welney Cricket Pavilion and Recreation Fields ANL-150804-183210009

An outdated wooden pavilion could be replaced by a modern new community centre if planners give the green light.

Welney Parish Council is hoping to build an estimated £200,000 new centre on the village playing field off Herne Drove.

The village’s football and cricket clubs are currently using an ill-equipped wooden building, which had been previously used in Wisbech.

Councillors are now hoping to combine the use of the pavilion with that of the 90-year-old village hall, based in Bedford Bank, in the new building in Herne Drove.

Plans to demolish the wooden pavilion and replace it with a modern building were submitted to West Norfolk Council last week.

Chairman of the parish council, Ken Goodger, said the new hall would be an important facility for the village.

He said: “This will mean the village is hopefully going to have a modern facility which will suit all groups and be efficient and economical to run.

“It will be the biggest project in the village since the original hall was built in the 1920s.

“The current pavilion is well past its sell-by-date.”

The community centre would include a hall, two changing rooms and kitchen. There are also hopes to include a veranda so visitors will be able to watch the action on the field.

With the new facilities it is hoped to attract bookings for family parties and weddings.

Villagers have been working on this project for many years and have received £100,000 from the Marshall Charity, which looks after Welney.

Residents have been fundraising with a number of events, along with donating collections from funerals.

The action committee, which has been working on the plans, is also submitting a number of funding applications to bodies such as Sport England and Wren.

Mr Goodger said: “We have got further than we have ever been before on this project.

“Everyone is really looking forward to moving it onto the next step.”

The current buildings are used by the village’s football and cricket teams, Friendship Club, bowls groups and table tennis.

Belly dancing, yoga, the Women’s Institute and bingos are also held.

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