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Work on £3m centre to begin within 14 weeks
BUILDING work is to start at Rose Hill’s new £3m community centre in January after it was given the go-ahead by councillors.
Once built, it will include a community centre, social club, advice centre and youth club.
The existing sports pavilion in Ashhurst Way will be replaced inside the building.
The planning application was approved at a meeting of the East Area Planning Committee on Wednesday.
The centre, replacing the existing one at The Oval, will be set back from Ashhurst Way on the site of the children’s playground, which will be re-sited, and could be completed in early 2015.
Ray James, chairman of the Rose Hill Tenants’ and Residents’ Association, said: “This is absolutely good news.
“I think I always had a slight reservation that, with all the cuts, the funding could have been pulled.
“The new centre will have a significant impact.
“Although it is perhaps going to be seen as a Rose Hill community facility, it will get wider use than that. It will open the opportunity for a lot more community activities.”
Carole Roberts, director of the Rose Hill and Donnington Advice Centre in Ashhurst Way, which will be included in the new centre, said: “It is fantastic, great news. We can’t wait.
“I think it will help us because we will be with other organisations.
“Some people might feel threatened about coming into an advice centre, whereas if you are going into a community centre, nobody knows where you are going.”
But Bill Buckingham, 92, secretary of the Rose Hill Community Association, which runs the existing community centre in The Oval, said the association had concerns about the size of the hall in the new centre.
He said: “We are going to protest about that before they start building because we wouldn’t be able to get the old people in there.”
Ed Turner, deputy leader of Oxford City Council and ward member for Rose Hill and Iffley, said: “It is fantastic news that the application was approved for the Rose Hill Community Centre.
“We can now get going with planning the building of this great facility for the community, which adds to the regeneration of Rose Hill.
“We’re grateful to everyone who has provided feedback, which has been taken on board as far as possible.
“This is going to be a very exciting building.
“It will give our community a real boost.”
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