This week has seen planning permission be approved by Amber Valley Borough Council for the new Blue Box Community Centre on the Parks Estate in Belper.
The new community centre will replace the former run-down Blue Box building, which had to be demolished following extensive fire and smoke damage in 2015. Since the demolition, Blue Box Belper has established itself as a charity, which aims to support residents of the Parks Estate and surrounding area to improve the quality of their own lives.
Tom Wyke, Chair of Blue Box Belper, said, “We are delighted to have secured the planning permission to construct a new Community Centre. The new Blue Box facility will become a vital community hub and base for delivering our current and growing number of community activities.”
“There continues to be obvious needs on the estate, which will be met by a new Community Centre. This can be a safe, warm and accessible place for all residents. We know the incredible and lasting impact this new community facility will have on the lives of the residents of the Parks Estate.”
“So far, we have raised over £53,000 towards the new construction, which includes financial support from Belper Town Council and Derbyshire County Council, as well as significant contributions from the local community through various fundraising activities over the years.”
The new community centre will cost in the region of £250,000-£300,000 to construct, and now Blue Box Belper has secured the planning permission, the charity will begin to apply to large grant-giving bodies to support the construction project.
Blue Box Belper currently supports and directly provides a range of local activities, including: supporting youth activities, hosting a monthly social gathering, designing and delivering a quarterly newsletter, hosting community fun days, and running a fortnightly craft group.