O&H Hampton Progress on Community Centre

07:51 Wednesday 2nd February 2011
Peterborough Breakfast Show BBC Radio Cambridgeshire

PAUL STAINTON: Work on the Hamptons community centre was delayed by the recession. That’s according to the developers, who have now cleared the site for the new facility. Suzy Roberts met Roger Tallowin from O&H Hampton at Hampton Vale Neighbourhood Centre. (TAPE-OB)
ROGER TALLOWIN: We’re now in the centre of the community, so, good place to put it. We’ve built the shopping area around it, and we’re now going to finish this off with the community building, which will start in a week or two’s time, and be open in September this year, hopefully.
SUZY ROBERTS: So we’re in a little car park. It’s not a very big car park for a community centre.
ROGER TALLOWIN: No. This car park was only built for the shops, so we’re 24 here at the moment. We’re going to make that up to 46, so there’ll be more parking, which again .. but it’s about shared use of the car park. Becuase in the evenings of course, most of the shops won’t be open, but then the community centre will be. So there’s double use of it.
SUZY ROBERTS: We’ve just got empty ground at the minute, rubble, what is going where?
ROGER TALLOWIN: In front of us, just the other side of the road from the one stop shop will be the community building. It will have two main halls, but that can be joined into one. So it has those dividing doors. But it will also have facilities for meetings. It will have facilities for playgroups, offices, a little kitchen, various sorts of toilets, disabled toilets even, off the main hall. It’s got children’s toilets. So a community room, or the children’s group, whoever may use it in the future, and that’s not up to me, that’s up to the Council. Because we hand it over to the Council. But it’s been designed to have those sort of flexibilities.
SUZY ROBERTS: It’s been a long time coming, some would say too long Roger.
ROGER TALLOWIN: Yes I’m sure they would. Unfortunately the recession has slowed us down considerably, because of course we have very little income at the moment. And it’s been hard graft to get our parent company to put up the money for it. But we are here to start it now.
SUZY ROBERTS: Would you say that this shows that O&H Hampton, that Hampton itself, is bucking the recession a bit, bucking the trend?
ROGER TALLOWIN: Hampton has continued through the recession. The housing numbers have continued. Last year we had a very good year. 550 odd houses were built, 300 of them in the affordable rented sector, 250 odd were from the private sector. We’re getting 200, 250 will be completed this year on the private sectors. So Hampton has continued through the recession. Unfortunately, from my point of view, housebuilders haven’t been buying any land. They’ve been using their own land, which is not good for me. But Hampton overall has been going on. Yes, bucking the recession I think is a good way of putting it. We have a development happening around Hempstead. We’ve got the church facility going in for planning permission at the moment. We’ve got the new shopping centre in Hempstead going through planning at the moment. There’s a number of things happening. And we will be here, continuing on, in the future.
SUZY ROBERTS: So that’s Roger Tallowin, from O&H Hampton. Let’s see what the people who live around here think about the advent of a new community centre.
WOMAN ONE: It’s fantastic. Yes, it’s a great place, it’s great people. It’s a beautiful location. It’s fantastic.
MAN ONE: If it’s for the younger generation, I think it will be good to get them off the streets. That’s never a good thing is it? So.
SUZY ROBERTS: Is that quite a problem in Hampton?
MAN ONE: Yes, I suppose. It’s worse in other areas, but yes, it’s a problem everywhere, isn’t it?
WOMAN TWO: I think they need a bit more over here. It’s only a little town at the minute, so, a bit more, you don’t really have to go out of town.
MAN TWO: We do need a community centre in Hampton Vale. It will make a massive change, I think. (LIVE-STUDIO_
PAUL STAINTON: Suzy Roberts with Roger Tallowin from O&H Hampton at Hampton Vale Neighbourhood Centre. Well Lorraine Clark runs the Hampton Gazette. Morning Lorraine.
PAUL STAINTON: About time?
LORRAINE CLARK: Yes. It’s really good news, really good news for the Hampton community.
PAUL STAINTON: What difference will it make, do you think?
LORRAINE CLARK: One of the major differences it will make is for the young children. Because there’s a real dire need for another pre-school in Hampton. A lot of children in the area have to go out of area to Yaxley for the facilities. And also the local community groups. There’s so many groups that are unable to hold anything in the local area. Everyone seems to have to go outside.
PAUL STAINTON: The community centre is just one of the things that you’re lacking though in Hampton, isn’t it?
PAUL STAINTON: There’s many many things you don’t have.
LORRAINE CLARK: Yes. But hopefully it’s all changing. As Roger said, we’ve now got planning in for a church, which will make a massive difference to the area. We’ve got a couple of new restaurants opening up. But yes, I think the community building is so so overdue. Yes. Good news for a lot of people.
PAUL STAINTON: Any rumours on a leisure centre, or anything like that?
LORRAINE CLARK: Well there’s planning permission gone in for a new leisure centre over by McDonalds in Hampton. And the plans are for a swimming pool, a big gymnasium, a cafe restaurant. And again, it’s something that we really need. And we should be hearing back on that in the next four weeks. So fingers crossed, that will also be happening.
PAUL STAINTON: Yes because when people moved to Hampton, they were promised so much, weren’t they? Do you feel now that the promises eventually are coming to fruition?
LORRAINE CLARK: Yes. Quite. I mean it’s a long time coming. I’ve lived here for gosh nearly seven years now. And when we first moved here, we were promised that there was going to be all these riverside face bars, restaurants. There was the great urban myth of the Hampton train station.
PAUL STAINTON: (LAUGHS) Well you might get it yet. You might, you might. You never know.
LORRAINE CLARK: You never know. So yes, I think there’s been a lot of frustration in the area. There has not been a large enough community facility. For all the small groups, it’s crazy. Like for example, we have the Hampton Dramatics Group. And they’re unable to hold any of their events and shows in Hampton. And obviously there’s the issue with Hampton College, which is a fantastic place of education, but we’re unable to use that for community facilties.
PAUL STAINTON: So a bit of good news is welcome. Still a great place to live?
LORRAINE CLARK: It’s wonderful. It’s a wonderful family place to live. There’s not many areas in Peterborough that you can walk round lakes to go to school. There’s lots of open space, wonderful bike routes. So in all, for the outdoor type of space, it’s brilliant, but yes, I think it’s really lacking community facilities.
PAUL STAINTON: Well let’s hope this is just the start of everything getting completed that was promised eh?
PAUL STAINTON: Lorraine, have a great day. Thank you for coming on. Lorraine Clark who runs the Hampton Gazette, this morning.