Carnival for �18m centre's opening

by Nadia Sam-Daliri A carnival is being planned to celebrate the opening of a community centre in a formerly run-down estate. The �18million Hillside Hub building, in Hillside, Stonebridge opened its doors for public bookings at the end o

by Nadia Sam-Daliri

A carnival is being planned to celebrate the opening of a community centre in a formerly run-down estate.

The �18million Hillside Hub building, in Hillside, Stonebridge opened its doors for public bookings at the end of last month.

A decade ago, Stonebridge was recognised as one of the most deprived pockets of London and was earmarked by the Government for a colossal regeneration package.


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Tower blocks were pulled down and facilities like an NHS Health Centre, Tesco Express and a cafe have been built.

Nigel Swanton, head of development for the Hillside Housing Trust, said: "Bookings are being taken for the main hall and there is a real buzz about the place. We are also looking forward to an NHS Health Centre setting up in the summer."

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The community centre has a hall, which groups can hire out, exercise studio, IT training room, meeting rooms, a workshop, offices and exhibition areas.

Stonebridge Housing Action Trust (HAT) kick-started the regeneration but it is now being run by Hillside Housing Trust, part of the Hyde Group.

The two-wings either side of the hub have 59 one and two-bedroom apartments.

The homes are the first on the estate that can be bought privately, with 34 for full purchase and 25 shared ownership properties.

The properties scooped the industry accolade, What House? award for Best Starter Home last year.

Mark Mitchener, director of Hillside Developers REAL, said: "The Hub shows what an impact the regeneration work is having, reinvigorating the area and bringing this community together."

The carnival will take place in the summer.

nadia.sam-daliri@archant.co.uk

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