THE last Royal British Legion in the borough has been given a cash boost of thousands of pounds to stay open.
Aspull Royal British Legion was awarded a £50,000 grant from the Viridor Tax Credit Scheme which will help to refurbish the club and keep it running as a community centre.
And club officials are delighted with the money – and the help they received from Leisure Trust officials.
The Scot Lane club was on the brink of closure but after councillors and club workers joined forces with funding officers from Wigan Leisure and Culture Trust, they were able to secure the much-needed financial help.
It means the leaky roof can now be repaired, the 40-year-old windows can be replaced, the car park can be resurfaced and a gate and fence can be installed.
Councillor John Hilton has been a member of the British Legion for 40 years.
He said: “We are very proud to have been given this money, it is a big achievement for us.
“We want to keep open the club, it is there for everybody to use.
“We contacted Zenno Vattev, a funding officer at WLCT and he helped us out filling the in the forms to obtain the funding.
“The club was really struggling but this has helped us out a great deal.”
The Legion is now also regularly used by mother and toddler groups, the Active Living team and agricultural groups.
Coun Hilton added: “It would have been a great shame if it had to close but we’ve been given some help.
“We need support from the local people now and rather than it just being a Saturday night venue, we have opened it up to the community.
“Our objective is to make this legion the focal point for all ex-servicemen in the borough.
“All the money the club makes is pumped back into helping out our Wigan ex-servicemen.
“We have all also done so well with our Poppy Appeal, we have raised more than £7,000.
“That is because of the support we have for this club and what our servicemen did for us.”
Zenno Vattev, funding officer for Wigan Leisure and Culture Trust said: “We’re delighted to have been able to help.
“Every year Wigan Leisure and Culture Trust endeavours to generate £300,000 from external funding sources to support communities and groups in meeting their aims and objectives in sports, heritage, the arts, play and the environment.”