Fri, 08 Nov 2019
Proposals to develop a new ‘community hub’ in Theale have been lodged with West Berkshire Council.
A planning application was submitted on October 14 and is awaiting approval.
It was submitted on behalf of Dr Ellerton’s Charity and Allotment Association, a Theale-based organisation committed to relief work in the area.
Established in 1899, it aims to address issues around “need, hardship and distress” in the parish.
The plans include the construction of a single-storey pavilion with workshop, kitchenette, social space and backyard.
It would be built next to the allotment gardens, just off Volunteer Road.
Planners initially intended for the hub to serve participants in Dr Ellerton’s long-running allotment scheme.
However, following consultations, it was decided that the space should also function as an administrative centre for a local Men in Sheds group.
Men in Sheds provides a space for older men to work and socialise.
The hub – a designated Shed – would allow members the opportunity to engage in woodwork and other crafts.
There is a Shed in Reading, with another currently under construction in Newbury.
Dr Ellerton’s Charity chairman Richard Anderson said: “While we were making the plans we were approached to see if we might consider enlarging the building to include a workshop for a wonderful charity called Men in Sheds.
“We are very aware of the ever-increasing problem of loneliness and isolation of the older members of our community and particularly for men.
“We felt that this addressed the problem head on and the trustees voted to include this in our plans.”