Centre is no more due to cash woes

Margaret Baxendale and Eunice Houghton at the community centre Worsley Mesnes
Margaret Baxendale and Eunice Houghton at the community centre Worsley Mesnes

WIGAN residents have lost one of their favourite facilities after a community centre was axed.

Worsley Mesnes North Commmunity Centre, which also had a youth hub, has shut its doors and will no longer run activities, due to lack of funding,

The site was run by Worsley Mesnes Community Association, who say that despite the best efforts of volunteers, it was no longer viable to keep running,

Margaret Baxendale, 60, secretary and treasurer, said: “We are in the process of closing down, which is very sad. It just came to a natural end and there was only three trustees - myself, Eunice Houghton and Pauline Rowley, headteacher of St James’ Primary School. We were limited to what we could do.

“Volunteers were declining and despite lots of meetings, no-one could help us carry on.”

Eunice Houghton, 71, who ran the toddler group, said: “In the end there was only the luncheon club and we could not afford building insurance and so we could not keep the centre open. We could not apply for funding as numbers were dwindling and we could not show there is interest in the area.

“It is a shame, because everybody tried their best. At one stage we had a lot of volunteers but numbers dwindled and there was no money coming in.”

The centre, in Worsley Mesnes Drive, was originally started by two women - Doris Bretherton and Pat Hill - who have since died. A new set of trustees took up the role more than six years ago, carried on the legacy, with groups including bingo, the luncheon club, Wigan Independence Advice Surgery and the Credit Union.

Worsley Mesnes Community Group is still running, which organises Christmas parties and trips. Members meet at Clifton House. All equipment will be donated to the south community centre.