First look at new £2m community hub in Norwich

The nursery garden at the new YMCA community hub, at the site of the former Jubilee Hall in Aylsham Road, Norwich.

The nursery garden at the new YMCA community hub, at the site of the former Jubilee Hall in Aylsham Road, Norwich. - Credit: YMCA Norfolk

A new community hub in Norwich is set to open later this year after a £2m project to transform a disused hall was completed earlier this month.

Charity YMCA Norfolk was given planning permission in 2019 to build the new facility on the site of Jubilee Hall in Aylsham Road, which was once used by war veterans and their families but had been closed for years.

The rear garden hire space at the new YMCA community hub, at the site of the former Jubilee Hall in Aylsham Road, Norwich.

The rear garden hire space at the new YMCA community hub, at the site of the former Jubilee Hall in Aylsham Road, Norwich. - Credit: YMCA Norfolk

The hub will house the charity's corporate offices as well as Williams' Kitchen, a café named after YMCA founder George Williams, the Explorers soft play area and Muddy Puddles, a 90-place children's nursery.

Chief executive Tim Sweeting and the YMCA board of trustees had originally planned for the nursery to open last month, but plans were delayed due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Chief Executive of the YMCA in Norfolk, Tim Sweeting. Picture: Ella Wilkinson

Chief executive of YMCA Norfolk, Tim Sweeting. - Credit: Ella Wilkinson

Construction of the building was completed earlier this month, and the charity is now in the process of fitting out the building and preparing for it to open in the spring.

Mr Sweeting said: "It has been great to work with Cocksedge Building Constructors, LSI Architects and Daniel Connal Partnership who have all done a fantastic job in converting the old British Legion building into a space that will serve the community of Norwich for many more decades to come."

Tim Sweeting, YMCA Norfolk CEO (leftt), as work starts to transform the former Jubilee Hall into com

Tim Sweeting (left), YMCA Norfolk chief executive, as work started to transform the former Jubilee Hall into community hub. - Credit: YMCA Norfolk


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A spokesperson for YMCA added that the building would be fit with "purpose built and environmentally-friendly facilities which will bring the centre to life and create a warm and welcoming environment for people of all ages and all walks of life to use and enjoy".

The project has been in the works for several years and supporters include the Lind Trust, which bought Jubilee Hall in 2015, Norfolk County Council and other local funders.

The nursery garden at the new YMCA community hub, at the site of the former Jubilee Hall in Aylsham Road, Norwich.

The nursery garden at the new YMCA community hub, at the site of the former Jubilee Hall in Aylsham Road, Norwich. - Credit: YMCA Norfolk

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One of the first parts of the completely building to open will be Muddy Puddles, which is set to begin its work after Easter.

Nursery manager Beth Fox said she had been busy taking calls and bookings from interested parents, while the charity is currently recruiting for more staff to join the team ahead of its opening.

The nursery garden at the new YMCA community hub, at the site of the former Jubilee Hall in Aylsham Road, Norwich.

The nursery garden at the new YMCA community hub, at the site of the former Jubilee Hall in Aylsham Road, Norwich. - Credit: YMCA Norfolk

YMCA added that it was "highly grateful" for the public support it has received for this project.

Its public appeal remains open for those who wish to support the project's final stages. To donate, visit YMCA's JustGiving page.

A nursery area for three to four-year-olds at the new YMCA community hub, at the site of the former Jubilee Hall in...

A nursery area for three to four-year-olds at the new YMCA community hub, at the site of the former Jubilee Hall in Aylsham Road, Norwich. - Credit: YMCA Norfolk

A nursery area for three to four-year-olds at the new YMCA community hub, at the site of the former Jubilee Hall in...

A nursery area for three to four-year-olds at the new YMCA community hub, at the site of the former Jubilee Hall in Aylsham Road, Norwich. - Credit: YMCA Norfolk

A nursery area for three to four-year-olds at the new YMCA community hub, at the site of the former Jubilee Hall in...

A nursery area for three to four-year-olds at the new YMCA community hub, at the site of the former Jubilee Hall in Aylsham Road, Norwich. - Credit: YMCA Norfolk

A nursery area for four to five-year-olds at the new YMCA community hub, at the site of the former Jubilee Hall in Aylsham...

A nursery area for four to five-year-olds at the new YMCA community hub, at the site of the former Jubilee Hall in Aylsham Road, Norwich. - Credit: YMCA Norfolk

A nursery area for four to five-year-olds at the new YMCA community hub, at the site of the former Jubilee Hall in Aylsham...

A nursery area for four to five-year-olds at the new YMCA community hub, at the site of the former Jubilee Hall in Aylsham Road, Norwich. - Credit: YMCA Norfolk

The nursery toilets at the new YMCA community hub, at the site of the former Jubilee Hall in Aylsham Road, Norwich.

The nursery toilets at the new YMCA community hub, at the site of the former Jubilee Hall in Aylsham Road, Norwich. - Credit: YMCA Norfolk

The nursery toilets at the new YMCA community hub, at the site of the former Jubilee Hall in Aylsham Road, Norwich.

The nursery toilets at the new YMCA community hub, at the site of the former Jubilee Hall in Aylsham Road, Norwich. - Credit: YMCA Norfolk

The café at the new YMCA community hub, at the site of the former Jubilee Hall in Aylsham Road, Norwich.

The café at the new YMCA community hub, at the site of the former Jubilee Hall in Aylsham Road, Norwich. - Credit: YMCA Norfolk

The café at the new YMCA community hub, at the site of the former Jubilee Hall in Aylsham Road, Norwich.

The café at the new YMCA community hub, at the site of the former Jubilee Hall in Aylsham Road, Norwich. - Credit: YMCA Norfolk

The café at the new YMCA community hub, at the site of the former Jubilee Hall in Aylsham Road, Norwich.

The café at the new YMCA community hub, at the site of the former Jubilee Hall in Aylsham Road, Norwich. - Credit: YMCA Norfolk

The hire space at the new YMCA community hub, at the site of the former Jubilee Hall in Aylsham Road, Norwich.

The hire space at the new YMCA community hub, at the site of the former Jubilee Hall in Aylsham Road, Norwich. - Credit: YMCA Norfolk

A meeting room at the new YMCA community hub, at the site of the former Jubilee Hall in Aylsham Road, Norwich.

A meeting room at the new YMCA community hub, at the site of the former Jubilee Hall in Aylsham Road, Norwich. - Credit: YMCA Norfolk


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