A HAMPSHIRE councillor has welcomed a hefty grant from the county council to revamp a well-used community centre.

Councillor Alan Dowden revealed that the work of Valley Park Community Centre’s new committee should take the praise for the £15,000 cash injection.

This money will go towards refurbishing the centre, on Pilgrims Close, which includes fresh meeting rooms, a corridor, toilets, lights and floors, and improvements to disabled access.

The committee has also bid for cash from Test Valley Borough Council, although the recipients of this money have not yet been revealed.

Valley Park member Cllr Dowden said: “To have the grant is very pleasing to me as I strongly support the community centre.

“There is a relatively new committee in place – chaired by Sarah Roberts, and they have been working really hard to get this money in.

“What they will do with that money is revamp the inside of the centre, especially to do-up the hall. It will look really good once its done.”

He added: “This new committee of the community centre have also been able to get the Knightwood Youth Service moved to the centre to make use of the hall. They currently operate out of the Knightwood Leisure Centre, but the room is not big enough for them, and they’ve had to turn potential new members away.

“This is great for the group as now more members will be able to join.”

Refurbishment work is expected to start imminently.

The funding was released by Councillor Seán Woodward the council’s recreation chief.

He said: “We work with Community Associations and Village Hall Trusts which seek to enable local people to meet the recreational, educational, social, cultural and environmental needs of their local communities. These organisations give local people an opportunity to participate in local activities and encourage local initiatives by people of all ages.

“The money we award through the Community Capital Buildings Fund ensures that activities can continue to take place in buildings that are fit for purpose and which people will continue to use for many years to come.”