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Ribbon cutting at the official opening of Lowton Community Hub

Lowton Community Hub celebrates grand opening

by Editor

A new community hub, which aims to become the “heart of the neighbourhood” has officially opened with a grand opening offering a taste of everything it has to offer.

The Lowton Community Hub is in the former Lowton Youth Club building off Newton Road. It has been completely remodelled thanks to an investment of over £300,000 and the tireless dedication of a group of local volunteers.

At its official opening on April 28, 2024, more than 300 people gathered for a day filled with unity and celebration. The event showcased the hub’s dedication to fostering a sense of belonging among the local community.

The Community Cafe at Lowton Community Hub

The Community Cafe at Lowton Community Hub

Attendees enjoyed a range of activities, such as face painting, a bouncy castle, and delicious treats from the community cafe and ice cream stalls. Live music performances from local talents added to the vibrant atmosphere.

Alongside the open day, the Hub was also hosting a martial arts festival, with demonstrations and classes from Shogun Karate Club, Leigh Judo Academy, and Kokoro Jujitsu. Participants of all ages and skill levels had the opportunity to learn from experienced instructors and engage in friendly competition, promoting physical fitness and discipline.

Judo demonstration at the official opening of the Lowton Community Hub

The Hub’s trustees are Luke Brown, former councillor Kath Houlton and Richard Massey. Their vision has helped bring to life a centre that Lowton can be truly proud of – with state-of-the-art facilities and an in-built commitment to fostering community spirit. They hope that the Hub will remain a cherished asset for generations to come.

Local councilors, political leaders, and the Mayor of Greater Manchester, Andy Burnham, attended the event to show their support for the community-driven initiative. Mayor Burnham officially opened the hub by cutting a ceremonial ribbon, marking a significant milestone for the community.

There were live music performances at the Grand Opening of the Lowton Community Hub

“When I walked in and saw the new facility, it was beyond what I expected,” said Andy Burnham. “Just spending some time in the community cafe and hearing they are open every day is fantastic.

“For an older person who’s on their own, it’s a brilliant thing to come down, have a coffee, and chat. We must do more to combat social isolation in the community and bring people together. That’s exactly what this place will do.”

How the Lowton Hub Came to back to life

Built in the 1950s, the old youth club building on Newton Road, which now houses the hub, has been used by thousands of young people in Lowton over the past seven decades. But it had become run down and was in desperate need of renovation. It had an initial rebirth a few years back when it was taken over by Leigh Judo Club, who secured an asset transfer from Wigan Council.

It reopened for a while, but severe structural damage caused by extreme weather in 2018 plunged the building’s future into doubt.

But the volunteer management team were still not prepared to give up on the dream. After securing £30,000 in funding from Sport England’s Community Investment Fund they were able to draw up even more ambitious plans for the building’s future.

And their vision paid off – they later secured another £150,000 to completely remodel the old youth club, later match funded with a further £150,000 from Wigan Council, taken from Section 106 contributions from local developers.

More than 300 people, of all ages, attended the grand opening of Lowton Community Hub.

Work began in November 2022, and the resulting Hub is now a modern and welcoming centre which can be used by all members of the community – from baby groups to judo. The new Community Cafe is already becoming a vibrant meeting place for local people of all ages, and there is a rapidly explanding timetable of activities happening in the Hub, including Judo, Jujitsu and Karate, as well as a Physio and Sports Injury Clinic.

Trustee Luke Brown said: “Seeing the Lowton Community Hub come to life has been incredibly rewarding.”

“While the journey was filled with challenges, the end result is a testament to the passion and dedication of everyone involved. It’s heartwarming to see everyone’s collective efforts create such a positive impact, and I’m proud of what we’ve accomplished.”

“I want to extend my deepest thanks to Sport England, Wigan Council, and every individual who contributed their skills and resources to make our vision a reality. The hub stands as a symbol of the power of collaboration and community spirit. It’s an honor to have played a part in creating a space that will enrich the lives of our community for generations to come.”

Keep up to date with what’s happening at the Lowton Community Hub

Visit their website for more information about what’s on at the Hub,  or follow @lowtonhub on Instagram or X.

 

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