Serving the people of Long Ashton & Leigh Woods

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The Community Centre and the surrounding recreational grounds/facilities are managed by a charity called the Long Ashton Community Association (LACA).

The Parish Council and LACA work very closely together. The Parish Council part-funds LACA to maintain the buildings. The Council also owns the Community Centre buildings and land, and these are leased to LACA on a long lease which expires on 31st December 2027.

Under normal circumstances the costs of running the Community Centre are met from the income generated by its use. The Parish Council each year awards a grant to LACA to cover the costs of maintaining the buildings and other facilities (this was around £30,000 in 2020/21) which are all ultimately owned by the Parish Council, but are run by LACA on a long lease.

The Council meets regularly with the LACA management committee to explore areas of mutual interest and to ensure that the Council's grant and other funding is being effectively used and spent on jointly agreed projects, particularly the repair and maintenance of the buildings and facilities. The Council would like to see a different governance model for LACA explored and if possible agreed as soon as practicable.

About

The Community Centre has 6 indoor rooms to hire, and extensive outdoor facilities including two tennis courts available for public use, a Bowling Green, football pitch, a multi-purpose arena and play areas. For more information, visit here.

History

  • In 1944, the 'The Village Association' was formed, who were tasked with raising funds for a War Memorial to take the form of a "first class Village Hall and enlargement of the Recreation Ground". Fund raising began for the estimated £15,000 cost.
  • By 1951, the Recreation Ground has been extended by more land purchase, the Tennis Courts laid out and the Football field levelled.
  • In 1957, the Association suggested building a new hall on the Recreation Ground, costed at £8,000, to be paid for by the sale of the old hall and the land on which it stood (now Lovelinch Gardens shops). A secret ballot at a public meeting in May that year voted for a new building and with this sale, along with a grant of £2,000 from the Rural District Council, the money was available to make plans.
  • In June 1959, the Foundation stone was laid on the Recreation Ground at Keedwell Hill and on 14th November 1959 the hall was officially declared open. Further plans included the provision of a Youth Hut alongside the hall and a bowling green, the latter coming to fruition in 1986. A Garden of Remembrance was laid out shortly after the opening which was later demolished when Keeds Hall was built on the land.
  • Have a look at this album by 'Discover North Somerset'. If you scroll down to the end of the album, you can see photos of what the village hall looked like in 1960.
  • In October 1996, a public meeting voted unanimously to expand the building, due to the fact that the facilities were being fully utilised. Long Ashton Millennium Project (LAMPRO), consisting of local residents, was set up to raise funds and manage the provision of the new facilities. User groups began holding events and dances with proceeds going to the Redevelopment Fund.
  • In 2002, the Club Room, used initially in the main by the Youth Club, and now incorporating the Cafe, was completed, followed by the Jubilee Pavilion in 2003.
  • Between 2001-2004, the childrens' playground, the arena, and the youth shelter bandstand all received a complete overhaul.
  • In 2008, the tennis pavilion was built, and in 2013, Peel Park, with pitches for the Junior Football Club, was laid out and ready for use.
  • A sum of money from the development of Long Ashton Research Station land enabled the completion of the later stages and LAMPRO was wound up in 2009.

Since 1965 the area has been managed by Long Ashton Community Association (LACA), successors to the Village Association, who handed over ownership of the land to the Parish Council at that time.

Many thanks to Jean Pullin (Local History Society) for this contribution

Last updated: Mon, 12 Jul 2021 10:39