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Former Barclays bank to be transformed into youth and community hub

PUBLISHED: 19:11 30 September 2020 | UPDATED: 19:11 30 September 2020

Bob Wright, Mal Gray, Paul Oakes and Annie Abbs of North Walsham Phoenix Group outside the former Barclays bank in North Walsham. Photo: North Walsham Phoenix Group

Bob Wright, Mal Gray, Paul Oakes and Annie Abbs of North Walsham Phoenix Group outside the former Barclays bank in North Walsham. Photo: North Walsham Phoenix Group

North Walsham Phoenix Group

A town centre bank is set to become a new community and youth hub.

North Walsham Phoenix Group have acquired the former Barclays building in the town centre. Photo: Casey Cooper-FiskeNorth Walsham Phoenix Group have acquired the former Barclays building in the town centre. Photo: Casey Cooper-Fiske

The site of the former Barclays bank in North Walsham, which closed in October 2018, has now been acquired by North Walsham Phoenix Group this week.

The group aims to support young people in the town, with an opening date for the new venture yet to be confirmed, however they are aiming for next spring and say further updates will be provided “in the coming months”.

Group member Paul Oakes said: “The building is going to take a lot of work, we’re hoping that as the Covid situation sorts itself out we’ll have a bit of time to do the necessary work and then hopefully we can open in the spring.

“We’re hoping it’ll be done by then but we’ve got disabled toilets and all sorts of other stuff to install so we’re talking a few months really, because there is a lot to do.

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“We’ve picked the keys up this week and we’ve got it long term, so watch this space.”

When it opens the centre will offer mental health drop-ins, youth support services and family support, with those offerings giving way to youth clubs, music and drama in the evenings.

North Walsham Phoenix Group chairman Mal Gray said: “Having secured the former Barclays building in the town centre we have a wonderful position to bring needed services and more to the people of North Walsham.

“We have been in discussion with organizations and services that are keen to be a part of this and many local businesses have already expressed a desire to help out with the building.

“We are all very excited at the amazing opportunities that lay ahead.”

The new opening follows the group’s North Walsham Youth Survey, which it conducted in 2019 to find out what was needed by the town’s youth and how their proposals could be carried out.


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