17 November, 2017:

We have submitted a planning application for the proposed Grange Park Community Centre this week. The final position of the building reflects recent feedback received from residents. Further communication will be going out to residents later today and will be posted on our Latest news page.

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In September 2016 we began investigating whether the Project would be eligible for a Big Lottery Reaching Communities Building grant. In December 2016 we submitted an email to the Lottery outlining our Project.

Following an initial email response expressing interest in the project, in January we met with representatives from the Big Lottery to discuss the project in more detail. In March we were notified that we had been awarded a development grant to facilitate drawings, planning permission and other expenses to help us reach RIBA 4, required to take us through the Big Lottery’s application process.

Since then…

We have approached Charnwood Borough Council to enter further conversations with William Davis for an extension of the S106 agreement for the land set aside for the community centre.

During June we submitted an application to the latest round of the Bright Ideas Fund. The aim of the fund would help us with the support and tools to start setting up a community business that would operate from the community centre to ensure it is sustainable for the long-term. However, despite a huge amount of time completing the application, it was unsuccessful.

As a consequence, we have found an alternative fund, the Awards for All, operated by the Big Lottery. We are in the process of completing the application form and hope to submit by the end of October.

Design phase

We have embarked on the design phase, engaging the professional services of MDA Consulting acting as employers agent to help guide us through the design phase. This is a requirement of the Big Lottery when using the Design and Build (D&B) process for a new building. We have also appointed Corporate Architecture to act as architects and we have signing a construction company that would undertake the development phase under the EMPA framework (EMPA is an organisation that helps to produce efficiency savings for property services procured by the public sector in the East Midlands) to RIBA stage 4.

We are currently working with our architects Corporate Architecture, our Employers Agent MDA consulting and an EMPA construction company G F Tomlinson, to develop a building design for the pre-construction phase that could be achieved for a predefined budget.  An early design from this process was shown at the joint community event on the 23rd September for comments. Once this has been fully developed then this will be submitted to planning.

Funding

The design phase (also known as the pre-construction) is being funded by a grant from the Big Lottery.

We are hoping to submit our Reaching Community Buildings application for £500k at the start of December. The Big Lottery panel will then consider the application at the start of January 2018 and we should hear back within 2-3 months. It is on this response that we will know whether the proposed community centre can be built.

At this point, if there is a shortfall from what the building will cost and the amount that the Big Lottery fund will offer us, we will then apply for a number of other local grants to meet the shortfall.

On 21st September we submitted an application to Charnwood Borough Council’s Community Facility grant scheme. We will hear the decision by the start of December. This grant would also be dependent on us being successful in our Big Lottery RCB application.

There are a number of landfill grant sources which we are aware of that we could apply for which would make up the difference.

We are also looking at other potential grant sources which are available in the longer term to help us equip the community centre and run the Project.

The location

William Davis and Charnwood Borough Council are in negotiations regarding the land assigned for community space as part of the Section 106 agreement. This includes the exact location that would be used for the proposed centre. Part of these discussions has resulted in the revision of the proposed location of the community centre to the site ear-marked for a surgery in the previous planning application.

To find out how the project is progressing and how you can get involved to help the dream become reality, why not attend our next meeting at Outwoods Edge School.

The GPC team is run by a small group of volunteers who give their time for free. Things have certainly come a long way over the past 14 months!

Last update : 11/10/2017