Delay for new Bourne community centre

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THE opening of a community centre in Bourne’s biggest housing development has been delayed further.

Kier Homes has confirmed that work on the £750,000 building for Elsea Park, in South Road, is likely to be finished by late autumn, instead of the previous dates, first given as April, and then July.

The developer is building the community centre as part of the legal agreement linked to its planning permission for Elsea Park, which will eventually include 2,000 homes.

Elsea Park Community Trust chairman Angela Bailey was originally disappointed with the delay but is sitting tight until it’s ready and said: “The site is growing quite rapidly and I think it is going to be a real asset.

“It will put a heart to what is becoming a small village.

“There are more than 700 houses here now.”

The setbacks for Kier, which had been due to start work in July last year, included the need for tree surveys and power supply issues as well as having bad weather. However, work finally started on the centre in November.

Kier residential land director Daniel Browne is positive about the ongoing project.

He said: “Elsea Park Community Centre is currently in the midst of the construction stage with the ground slab and steel portal frame now in place.”

The centre will include a reception area, trust office, kitchen and a main hall with stage.

“It will also provide housing for the plant and equipment for the maintenance of the estate’s green areas,” said Mr Browne.

“It is the intention that, alongside the completion of the community centre, Kier will also be undertaking works to the long-awaited Linear Park.

“This will include a lit footpath and shared cycleway linking the centre to the rest of the estate along a winding path through green space and planted areas.”

Mr Browne said Kier was now aiming to hand over the centre to the trust, which is made up of residents, councillors and representatives of Kier Homes, in November.

He said: “The trust will then equip the centre ready for opening.”

Mrs Bailey added: “We are extremely excited.

“It is getting to the point where we are picking floor coverings and wall finishes. It is starting to feel real.

South Kesteven District Council granted planning permission for the community centre in August, 2008.