An opening ceremony was held in Highbridge on Saturday (February 8th) for a new community centre for young adults that replaces the town’s former Post Office.
Burnham and Highbridge’s Mayor, Cllr Andy Brewer, cut a ribbon alongside Mayoress Lorna Brewer and Town Crier Alistair Murray to offically open ‘The Meeting Place’, a new community centre for teenagers and young adults.
Over £6,000 has been spent on turning the property in Church Street into the free-to-use facilities, which include a pool table, a computer gaming area, table football, board games and soft seating areas. There’s also a cafe selling snacks and drinks.
The Meeting Place is being run by a dedicated team of volunteers and members of Highbridge’s Gospel Tabernacle Church, led by Pastor Kelton Black.
It is open on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays from 5-8pm with plans to extend the hours in the future.
Talking to Burnham-On-Sea.com at Saturday’s opening, Kelton said: “It’s aimed at young adults aged from 13-30. What we’re offering here is unique – it doesn’t compete with the new YMCA building – instead, it complements it.”
“A survey of local young people was recently conducted with the help of Burnham and Highbridge Town Council which highlighted a lack of facilities and places to meet for young people which has been the driving force for the new facilities here.”
“The owner of the former post office, Alastair Graham, has been hugely supportive and has given us so much help and given us a great deal on the rent to get us started.”
“It has all been made possible thanks to kind donations and support to the Gospel Tabernacle Church. We have spent around £5-6,000 on turning the old post office into these new modern facilities.”
“A team of young people from Gospel churches have also done the work for us and will continue to help run the facilities, led by Eric, Megan and Mayer.”
“It is a big ongoing commitment and we will need more grants and donations to keep it running and being improved. As an example, we are hoping to put in central heating but that will cost around £6,000.”
He added that music events will be held at the new facilities and they may hire out the facilities at other times of the week for community use in the future.
Mayor Cllr Andy Brewer told Burnham-On-Sea.com: “It’s great to see this former Post Office being transformed into a really great community asset for young people in Highbridge. It meets a local need for more youth facilities. I congratulate everyone involved.”