Wymondham community rooms could be turned into housing - warning

Two community rooms in Wymondham could be turned into housing if no-one comes forward to run them.

Saffron Housing Trust, which owns the rooms in Green Lane in the Silfield area, said it is likely the facilties would be converted into flats if residents do not come up with ideas on how they could be used soon.

The association said despite the rooms – a tenants resource centre and an adjacent former shop – once being busy with a range of activities, including youth clubs and play groups, they are now under-used.

Earlier this year Saffron Housing sent out a plea to tenants to form a committee to oversee the running of the rooms after previous volunteers decided to move on, but no-one responded.

If there is still no interest by the new year a decision could be made to turn the space into residential apartments in light of a mounting housing waiting list – closing the only community venue in Silfield.

Emilie Hildreth, customer involvement manager at Saffron Housing, said she would like the rooms in Silfield to mirror the success of a similar venue in Taylor Road, Diss, which is run by residents and has a packed schedule of clubs, classes and events.

She said: 'The facility could have potential to offer a lot to the community if a motivated group came forward and took over. Ideas such as community internet access, coffee mornings, a community garden or barbecue, activities for young people and classes are just a few ideas that local people have previously suggested.

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'Residents have been invited to meet with us to share their views about these rooms and see if anyone would be interested in volunteering to help keep them going. Unfortunately we did not get any response.'

She added: 'If volunteers do not come forward to help run the community rooms then Saffron will have to look at other options for the building and this could mean turning the community rooms into flats. There are already two flats above the rooms.'

Residents from across Wymondham are welcome to join the committee. If a group can be formed then the Wymondham branch of the Hope Church has already offered a member of staff to help with administration. Saffron Housing said it can also provide support in terms of training in basic book keeping and health and safety regulations.

For more information, call Saffron Housing Trust on 01508 532000.