BROOMHILL Gardens And Community Hub Officially Opens

LOCAL residents and community representatives celebrated completion of the new Broomhill Gardens and Community Hub in Mearns Street, Greenock.

The facility, on the site of the former Mearns Centre, was officially opened by Inverclyde Provost Martin Brennan.

The initiative undertaken by Inverclyde Association for Mental Health and residents, and designed by Inch Architecture and ERZ Landscape Architects, has seen the transformation of two derelict brownfield sites into a horticultural training facility, community hub, café and offices.

Lesley Palmer, architect and founder of INCH Architecture, is an enthusiastic advocate for green spaces in residential areas. She said: “Inch and our design team are honoured to have been able to work with IAMH and the Broomhill community on the design and delivery of this wonderful project. From the outset the design team worked to create a local amenity where people can meet and enjoy the benefits of horticulture. Public green space is a valuable and much needed asset for all of our communities and we hope this series of green spaces will provide a backdrop around which IAMH and the local community can flourish together.”

The £2.2million project has been funded by the Big Lottery Fund’s Life Transitions Programme, Inverclyde Council and the Scottish Government’s Regeneration Capital Grant Fund.

Jenny Speck, chair of Broomhill Tenants' and Residents' Association, said: “This fabulous facility is another vital piece of the jigsaw for the residents of not just Broomhill, but the wider community too. As a focal point, a meeting place and a community hub it enhances the area and I hope it will encourage people to come along and join in the activities planned for the future.”

The Gardens and Community Hub are managed by Inwork Enterprises Ltd, a social enterprise owned by Inverclyde Association for Mental Health. The new facility will allow the social business to expand and offer additional training opportunities in office and catering skills alongside existing horticultural and landscaping training.

Broomhill gardens was constructed by CCG. Works commenced in August 2016 and delivered over a 48-week programme.

Inverclyde Provost Martin Brennan and Dianne McGranaghan, director of Inverclyde Association for Mental Health unveil the plaque

Calum Murray, director of CCG, said: “It has been a privilege to be involved in the delivery of this excellent new community facility which is part of a wider regeneration of the Broomhill area. CCG has undertaken this project with our trademark care and efficiency to deliver a top-of-the-range building that will surely be enjoyed by the local community. We are proud to have worked with Inverclyde Association of Mental Health and thank them for their continued support during the construction programme.”

Inverclyde Provost Martin Brennan, Jenny Speck chairperson of Broomhill Tenants' and Residents' Association, Margaret Tait of Inverclyde Association for Mental Health and local MSP Stuart McMillan

Margaret Tait, chief executive of Inverclyde Association for Mental Health, said: “We are committed to giving people who face multiple barriers in their life the opportunity to realise their potential. This is a real partnership between the public, third sector and local community and we hope it will be seen as an effective model of delivering community regeneration and participation.

Inverclyde Council Provost Martin Brennan said: “I am honoured and humbled to open this fabulous gardens and community hub. To see disused land be brought back to life is one thing. To see it brought back to be used for such a worthwhile reason is something for all of us to welcome. The project is a key part of the wider regeneration of Broomhill and that is a community project without parallel and one that we all have a role to play in making a reality.

“I congratulate all of the people who got involved right from the beginning up to today to make the Broomhill Gardens and Community Hub a reality. What you have done will make a real and lasting contribution to the lives of thousands of people in the years to come. The Broomhill Gardens and Community Hub is something to be truly proud of.”

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