New Community Centre for Stoke Holy Cross

A brand-new community centre is set to be built at Stoke Holy Cross, thanks to £500,000 of investment from South Norfolk Council. 

Plans for the new building on the playing field site have been in the pipeline for several years but will now come to fruition this autumn thanks to the Council’s Co-Investment Grant Fund. 

South Norfolk Cabinet Member Cllr Graham Minshull said: “We are so pleased to be able to help fund this fantastic new building, which can be enjoyed and used by the whole community. It will bring people together and give the community the space they so desperately need.” 

The new community centre will include a large hall, a meeting room, a café and kitchen, and greatly improved accommodation for the village pre-school. Alongside the playing fields there will be a patio and viewing area.

Parish Council representative, Sue Hull, said: “The current building on the site is over 40 years-old and the village has outgrown it. Over six years ago, the Parish Council began looking at ways to fund a new community centre and thanks to the determination and perseverance of our members, particularly Charles Bussey and Glyn Davies, it’s finally going to happen.  We were over the moon when we heard we were to receive the money from South Norfolk Council – it was like all our Christmases had come at once!” 

The village pre-school will have a much larger area and greater storage facilities, meaning they can extend their opening hours and accept more children. They will also have a separate entrance, to meet safe-guarding regulations.

Sue added: “It will be wonderful to have a space big enough to house both the playgroup and other activities, such as fitness classes, talks, craft activities and events. The new community café will also be a fantastic addition, it will be a lovely place where people can meet up and it will also be able to provide refreshments at events and to all the parents and supporters of our young footballers, who regularly use the playing fields.”

It’s hoped the building will be completed by Spring next year.  Sue said: “It will be such a fantastic asset for the whole village, we can’t wait to see it finished!”

South Norfolk Council’s Co-Investment Grant Fund, set up in 2022 encourages and supports the delivery of large-scale infrastructure projects, alongside growth in South Norfolk’s parishes and towns. The scheme is designed to help deliver projects that benefit the local and wider community by providing match funding. South Norfolk Council match funded the new community centre with funding from the Parish’s Community Infrastructure Levy and s106 money.  A feasibility study for the project was produced by FMG Consulting using funding from the Council’s Pride in Place Community Grant, part of the Shared Prosperity Fund.

For more information about funding opportunities, please visit the Council’s website and search for Community Funding