Former bowls club to become drop-in centre for Stamford youngsters

A new youth hub will soon be ready to open on The Rec in Stamford after more than a year of hard work by the Salvation Army.

Captains of the Stamford branch Ian and Margot Walford have been busy refurbishing the former Belton Bowls pavilion at the playarea and hope it will be ready to open by the end of June.

The Salvation Army has received grants from the Harry Skells Trust and the Stamford Young People’s Charity Committee to enable the refurbishment work.

It will be a drop-in venue with a “coffee-bar look” aimed at young people aged between 16 and 25, providing an area to socialise, play games, listen to music and watch television.

Ian said since the couple had taken over as captains three years ago, they had been looking to improve what they could do in the community.

The Salvation Army holds its services on a Sunday in a room at Stamford Hospital but has had no permanent base in the town since its North Street home was demolished.

Known as The Shack, the new youth venue will be open on Friday and Saturday evenings and will also be a drop-in for families and children on occasions during the day and at weekends.

Ian said: “The Recreation Ground is a fantastic location and we are really excited. We hope it will be a successful project for young people and run by young people.

“We’re not trying to detract from the youth projects already in Stamford, we want to enhance them.”

The pair are looking for volunteers and anyone wishing to help can call Ian or Margot on 07870 284131.

A formal ceremony to mark the completion of the public toilets at the Recreation Ground was put back so councillors and representatives could also celebrate the achievements of the Salvation Army. This ceremony will now be held on May 22.