New hope for village hall with £240k funding plan

Bridget Ingle right and dad Brendan left and other Wincobank residents outside the Newman Court,Jenkin Rd
Bridget Ingle right and dad Brendan left and other Wincobank residents outside the Newman Court,Jenkin Rd
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SEVEN years of waiting for a community centre could soon end for Wincobank residents - with councillors set to grant £240,000 to convert a disused building at an old sheltered housing complex.

Wincobank has lacked a community building since the Wash House centre closed in 2005.

Now Sheffield Council’s cabinet has been recommended to approve funding to convert the communal building at the old Newman Court sheltered housing complex in Newman Road, when they meet on Wednesday.

And residents said they already have plans to secure tens of thousands of pounds more to fit out the building.

Bridget Ingle, one of the leading campaigners for a new centre, said: “It’s fantastic news. The new centre will be well used by community groups and functions.

“The plan is for a committee to be set up to run the building, which we’d like to call Wincobank Village Hall.”

Miss Ingle, the daughter of boxing trainer Brendan Ingle, said she has also been in discussions with Veolia, Sheffield Council’s waste management contractor, about making an application for grants through the Landfill Tax Credits scheme, money which must be set aside towards community projects in return for sending rubbish to landfill.

She said: “Up to £100,000 is available for individual projects, although grants are usually £50,000 to £60,000.

“We’d use the money to kit out the centre. As a starting point, there’s 10 to 11 groups waiting to use it and we’d also like to put on activities such as a community cinema and arts productions.”

In a report to the cabinet, Nick Slater, of Sheffield Council’s communities department, said: “The Wincobank community has been without a council-owned community building since the Wash House in Merton Lane was closed in 2005 and demolished in 2008 on health and safety grounds.

“Refurbishment of the communal block from the closed Newman Court sheltered housing scheme is felt to be the best-deliverable option for the people of Wincobank to create a large community facility.”

Mr Slater proposed to allocate the £240,000 from the council’s corporate resource pool of funding, due to ‘significant demand’ for a community facility.

Under the plans, the council would refurbish the centre with new heating, wiring and double glazing, while also covering management of the building, once opened, from its community buildings management budgets.