New community hub for Thetford after girl's terrifying attack

12-year-old Talia Lacey and her dad Ben Lacey from Thetford

Ben Lacey came up with the idea of the community hub after his 12-year-old daughter was attacked in August. - Credit: Ben Lacey

A new community group for children and teenagers is arriving in Thetford after the efforts of a father who's daughter was attacked.

Provisionally named the Keystone Project, the community group aims to give young people in Thetford a safe space to relax with friends away from the streets after school.

The creation of the project has been spearheaded by Ben Lacey after his daughter Talia was attacked on August 29.

A video of a group of young people attacking his 12-year-old daughter was posted to social media.

Mr Lacey said: "In Thetford, there’s community centres for different areas which I think promotes separation between groups of kids.

"I wanted to create a central hub where any one is welcome to help prevent that, somewhere people can come together as a community.


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"This will be a safe place for children, where they can access support if needed and come together to break barriers."

Keystone Innovation Centre, in Croxton Road, Thetford where the community hub will be opened in November.

Keystone Innovation Centre, in Croxton Road, Thetford where the community hub will be opened in November. - Credit: Google

Now, the 36-year-old has teamed up with The Keystone Development Trust, a charity dedicated to building community in Thetford, to open the spot in the Keystone Innovation Centre, on Croxton Road.

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Mr Lacey continued: "The idea is that the group will be led by the children to give them a sense of responsibility over something of their own.

"We don't want to be adults preaching to them and telling them how to spend their time, the kids will be the frontrunners of it.

"It is a space for them so they should have responsibility for it."

The hub is currently set to be opened on Wednesday, November 3 and will then be open every Wednesday from 4pm until 7pm.

The opening hours are subject to change, depending on whether the children want the hub open more often.

Alongside the project, a pop-up second-hand clothing boutique named 11-Teen Boutique is opening to provide clothing and school uniform for those between the ages of 11 and 19 that are in need.

Parents can come along with their children to browse the pop up boutique stay and have a tea or coffee. Donations appreciated.

Both the project and boutique are looking for support and donations of clothes, phone chargers, furniture and games consoles.

Anyone wanting to help should contact benjaminlacey85@gmail.com.

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