Cumbria Crack

Public meeting announced to discuss plans for former Alston Primary School

Christopher Reed, Alston Local Committee Cate Grimes, Chair Oaklea Trust, Maxine Denoual Alston Local Committee & Clive Wigley CEO Oaklea Trust. Taken at Oaklea Trust’s highly successful Appleby Hub community enterprise in the Eden Valley.

Plans to bring the former Alston Primary School, in Alston, Cumbria back into use for the benefit of the local community have taken another step forward. An evening public meeting will be held at the Heritage Open Day meeting at Samuel King’s School on Wednesday 24 July 2019 from 1900. The aim is to share with the community what the plans could entail and to keep local people informed.

Christopher Reed, from Alston Local Committee explains: “A group of community minded people have been exploring future uses for the old Alston Primary School and are delighted that the Oaklea Trust have announced that they are working with them on the first stage of the project. They have the same ethos towards the community as the group and they can bring their expertise and professionalism to the project to relieve the pressure of legal, financial and resources on the group. This leaves the group to concentrate on the needs and aspirations of the local community to make sure it caters for as wider spectrum of Alston Moor people as possible.”

Christopher adds: “The aim is to turn the old primary school into a physical and mental health and wellbeing centre for all ages. There is still a long way to go and an awful lot of work still to do, and of course nothing is certain, but with Oaklea Trust being involved the project has a very good chance of being a sustainable success which will benefit the community for years to come.”

Clive Wigley, CEO Of Oaklea Trust: “The project is at a very early stage and we –Oaklea Trust- are in discussions with Cumbria County Council over a community asset transfer (CAT)of the school to the charity. We are working closely with local people to take the project forward. Oaklea has an excellent track record of developing former council buildings into community hubs – notably our hugely successful Appleby Hub Community Café & social enterprise in the Eden Valley.”

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