We're determined to keep vital community link

Many West Hampstead residents have been in contact with us because of their concerns about the future of our local community centre in Mill Lane and the various services it provides. The centre has been run for many years by West Hampstead Community Assoc

Many West Hampstead residents have been in contact with us because of their concerns about the future of our local community centre in Mill Lane and the various services it provides.

The centre has been run for many years by West Hampstead Community Association, which has served our community well since 1974 through the hard work of both its staff and many volunteers.

However, in recent months the association has had increasing financial difficulties despite receiving regular funding from Camden Council and being successful in getting grants from various other bodies.

West Hampstead and Fortune Green's councillors have been working with Camden officers to help find a solution to these financial difficulties and a way forward for the community centre, and were very pleased when the council agreed an imaginative reorganisation of the centre's premises in March, including a new charity shop at the 60-62 Mill Lane site.


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Sadly, the financial problems faced by the association have in the end proved impossible to resolve, and the association's board of trustees, which is made up of local residents, found itself with no legal alternative but to declare the association insolvent at the end of May and close the centre's doors for the time being.

While the legal and financial position is being sorted out, Camden's officers are working urgently to find alternatives for important services such as the after-school club and SureStart.

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The local councillors and many residents who have contacted us are also keen that the Jester Festival, which in recent years has been organised through the community centre, should still take place at the beginning of July.

Keith Moffitt and I, as local councillors with a long history of involvement with the community centre, are joining forces with the President of the West Hampstead Community Association, Geoff Berridge, to organise an open public meeting to provide more information, answer your questions, and discuss the best way forward.

The meeting will take place at 8pm on Monday June 30 in the Community Hall on Broomsleigh Street. In the meantime, anyone with concerns is welcome to e-mail Keith Moffitt (kmoffitt@cix.co.uk) or ring me, Flick Rea, on 020 - 7794 8454 or Geoff Berridge on 020 - 7794 9723.

We are all determined that West Hampstead should not lose its community services, and we are pleased that so many residents have already been in touch offering their support.

Cllr Flick Rea

Vice-President, West Hampstead Community Association

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