Cafe ven­ture is group’s lat­est move to ex­pand es­tate fa­cil­i­ties

Macclesfield Express - - MACCLESFIELD PEOPLE -

THE com­mu­nity group be­hind Hurds­field’s li­brary ser­vice is aim­ing to ex­pand with a new cafe.

The Green will open as a so­cial en­ter­prise in two empty units in the shop­ping pa­rade next to the li­brary at Hurds­field Green.

The cafe will be open Mon­day to Fri­day from 8am to 3pm and will be run by two part-time staff.

The pro­ject is the brain­child of Hurds­field Com­mu­nity Group (HCG), which five years ago stepped in to save fa­cil­i­ties on the es­tate af­ter the pro­posed clo­sure of the com­mu­nity cen­tre and li­brary.

The group worked closely with Peaks and Plains hous­ing as­so­ci­a­tion to set up a com­mu­nity hub for a li­brary ser­vice and other com­mu­nity uses.

Last year HCG merged with lo­cal group, Friends of Ban­bury Park, which was set up by two en­ter­pris­ing moth­ers from the es­tate to re­vi­talise the park and play area. The HCG group also now runs a youth club, sewing group and art group. This year the plan is for HCG to ex­pand into the for­mer shop units next to its base at the li­brary.

The pro­ject is ex­pected to cost more than £30,000.

HCG have suc­cess­fully bid for £10,000 from Pub­lic Health by mak­ing the cafe de­men­tia friendly and part­ner­ing with Age UK. This cash will fund cater­ing equip­ment, fur­ni­ture and dec­o­rat­ing costs. The plan is also to set up a reg­u­lar lunch club for el­derly res­i­dents, many of whom live in the two tower blocks of flats owned by Peaks and Plains. The hous­ing as­so­ci­a­tion has also pledged to spend £20,000 to help ren­o­vate the build­ing.

Pay­ing trib­ute to the work of HCG, Nigel Ben­nett, Peaks and Plains’ as­sis­tant di­rec­tor of part­ner­ships, said: “We can’t thank Hurds­field Com­mu­nity Group enough for their en­thu­si­asm and in­ter­est in im­prov­ing their com­mu­nity.

“Help­ing them was an easy de­ci­sion to make, as their val­ues match our own of help­ing to im­prove the lo­cal area and fa­cil­i­ties, which ben­e­fits both our res­i­dents and the lo­cal com­mu­nity.”

Peaks and Plains Hous­ing Trust has sub­mit­ted plans to Cheshire East Coun­cil.

The pro­ject has the sup­port of Keith Smith from Mac­cles­field Civic So­ci­ety, which cam­paigns for the preser­va­tion and im­prove­ments of the town’s build­ings.

He said: “We wel­come the pro­posal as a valu­able com­mu­nity fa­cil­ity and as an aid to en­hance­ment and re­gen­er­a­tion of this part of the Hurds­field es­tate.”

To keep up to date with the pro­ject visit the group’s Face­book page “Hurds­field Com­mu­nity Group”.

Paul Truswell, from Mac­cles­field, is rais­ing funds for 1st Hurds­field Scouts by walk­ing 550 miles across Eng­land

●● Hurds­field com­mu­nity li­brary

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