SCORES of families enjoyed a day of fun activities and entertainment as a community centre opened its doors.
The first Love Leigh Park Day was held on Saturday at Leigh Park Community Centre, in Dunsbury Way.
The community centre, which is run by Community First, held craft activities, musical performances, a free lunch, boxing demonstrations, plus more, all followed by a screening of the film Trolls in the evening.
Centre manager Dan Moore said: ‘It was very successful and we saw more than 500 people come through the doors on Saturday.
‘It was great, everyone looked like they enjoyed it and the performances from Warren Park Primary School and Park Community School were especially good.
‘The over 50s fitness club put on a demonstration which everyone joined in with. Everyone had great fun, enjoying the facilities and learning about the history of the centre and Leigh Park, and sharing memories.’
A variety of stalls were showcasing facilities available from the centre – such as the Citizens Advice Bureau and Leigh Park Amateur Boxing Club – and groups in the area such as Making Space, a craft centre in Bishopstoke Road, and Angel Radio in Havant were also at the day.
Lynne Dick, from Making Space, said: ‘Days like these are important because – like in any community – people are busy with their daily lives, but events like this give us a chance to connect and to find out what’s on offer on their doorsteps, plus it’s a great sociable event.’
Tim Houghton, chief executive of Community First which took over running the centre last year, said he was delighted with the turn out.
He said: ‘It has been brilliant. It was all about getting local people from Leigh Park into the centre to find out the groups and activities.’
Mr Houghton encouraged people to visit the centre – and to get involved with volunteering.
He added: ‘The centre is essential, it’s the heart beat of the community. It’s where people come to unite. The whole point of the event was to celebrate that and the wonderful things that go on in Leigh Park.’
The day was funded by an £8,528 grant from the Big Lottery Celebrate Fund.
Visitors were also being asked to give their views on what they would like to see at the centre in a consultation, which continues today.
A coffee and cake day, which is free to attend, is being held at the centre from 12.30pm until 2.30pm today.
For more info or to get involved with centre contact firstname.lastname@example.org or go to facebook.com/leighparkcommunitycentre