Centre 81 £1.5m fundraising off to a flying start

Centre 81 chief executive Diana Staines and chairman of trustees Karl Jermyn welcome the first respo

Centre 81 chief executive Diana Staines and chairman of trustees Karl Jermyn welcome the first responses to the appeal. - Credit: Archant

Money is already rolling in to support Centre 81’s £1.5m fundraising appeal to acquire larger premises and widen its services for disabled people in the Great Yarmouth area.

Even before the official launch of the appeal last week, the fundraising thermometer was rising as donations dropped in.

Among them was £280 from Mark Everard of Ovamill who encouraged friends and family to support Centre 81 instead of spending money on gifts at a birthday party, celebrating his wife’s 60th and daughter’s 30th.

Another £250 came from Norfolk Provincial Masonic Golf Association and £500 from Norfolk Community Foundation from the Fuller Community First Revenue Fund. And now the trustees have pledged to transfer £20,000 into the appeal fund to give it a healthy kick-start.

Centre 81 chief executive Diana Staines said members saving their 1p, 2p and 5p coins and a bucket collection at the Sportsmans Arms pub raised another £42.

The charity hope to acquire and convert Mildred Stone residential care home near its site in Tar Works road to create a new complex for people with disabilities. The redevelopment of Mildred Stone could also provide living accommodation for disabled people and fully-accessible holiday units, as well as offering facilities for other charities and community groups.

Centre 81 runs a skills and activities centre for about 70 members and a community transport door-to-door service for another 700 across the borough.

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It faces competition from potential developers for the Mildred Stone site and must raise the money quickly to put in its bid.

Donations can be made to the New Centre 81 Appeal via the website www.newcentre81.co.uk or send a cheque payable to Centre 81 to Centre 81, Tar Works Road, Great Yarmouth NR30 1QR.

For information, or for support for a fundraising event, call Diana on 01493 852573.