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Brighter future for Norwich resource centre

PUBLISHED: 06:30 02 May 2012 | UPDATED: 15:00 02 May 2012

Steve Foyster at the Christian Resource Centre at the St Michael-at-Plea Church. Picture: Denise Bradley

Steve Foyster at the Christian Resource Centre at the St Michael-at-Plea Church. Picture: Denise Bradley

Archant

The future of a city resource centre has been secured in the short-term after members of the public responded to a rallying call.

As reported in the Evening News, the Norwich Christian Resource Centre, based at St Michael-at-Plea in Redwell Street, and the Forget-me-Not Cafe faced possible closure after a significant drop in turnover.

The situation prompted centre bosses to issue a plea for public support.

Now, one month on, the centre is looking forward to a brighter future following a raft of donations, an influx of customers and a fundraising walk.

Centre Manager Steve Foyster said: “We’ve had great support from our landlords, the Norwich Historic Churches Trust, and a terrific response from customers both in prayer and spending, meaning the centre met its turnover target for March and April so far.

“I’ve been very impressed with the response. We’ve had a lot more people come in, donations from churches, donations from individuals including £100 which was left anonymously.

“And we’ve had donations of thousands of second hand books which have been in really good condition and have been flying off the shelf.”

The ecumenical Christian resource centre offers a bookshop, an online shop, a meeting place, a platform for debate and a café.

It has been based at St Michael-At-Plea church, near Bank Plain, for between six and seven years after moving from Pottergate.

Mr Foyster said between £1,500 and £2,000 has been donated to the centre over the past month and that a further £2,000 was raised when 17 people took part in the April Amble, a three mile charity walk along the Riverside and through the city centre, on Sunday.

The centre has also benefited from increased orders for hymn books and bibles, with customers receiving good discounts, and a grant from the Geoffrey Watling Charity for a new dishwasher for the cafe.

“We want to say a big thank you but the centre still needs the support of both church organisations and individuals to prevent the situation deteriorating again,” said Mr Foyster.

“In the medium term we are okay but we still need people to come in on a regular basis and for people to remember us.”

To find out more about the centre, go to www.norwichcrc.co.uk.

Are you trying to save a community resource? Call reporter Kate Scotter on 01603 772326 or email kate.scotter@archant.co.uk.

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