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Kingsgate Community Association to close after Covid-19 hits finances

PUBLISHED: 17:15 15 September 2020 | UPDATED: 17:19 15 September 2020

The Kingsgate Community Centre. Picture: Carmen Klammer

The Kingsgate Community Centre. Picture: Carmen Klammer

Archant

After a century “at the centre of the Kilburn and West Hampstead communities”, the Kingsgate Community Association (KCA) has announced it is to close with immediate effect.

At a meeting of the KCA’s trustees last week the decision was taken on the basis that the “operational and financial model of the charity is no longer sustainable”.

The trustees there said the financial shortfall had appeared as renting out space commercially – impossible due to Covid-19 restrictions – formed a vital portion of its income, and it is unable to open widely enough to recoup that due to social distancing guidelines.

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The trustees paid tribute to staff including centre manager Marie Griffin – who was described as having a “particular combination of personality, gifts, experience and skills” that had been invaluable.

The nursery run from the community centre is also affected.

Camden’s outgoing culture chief Cllr Jonathan Simpson said: “Despite everyone’s best efforts, they have been victim of the ongoing global pandemic and lockdown, which has hit the voluntary sector hard, both in Camden and nationally.”

Cllr Simpson said Camden, who own KCA’s Kingsgate Road building, would work with other voluntary centre groups to replace the services lost.


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