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Withywood Centre official opening

Withywood Centre openingBristol South MP, Dawn Primarolo, joined the Bishop of Bristol, the Right Reverend Mike Hill, to officially mark the opening of the brand new Withywood Centre last Friday.

The £4.5m centre comprises a community facility, healthy living centre and church with youth provision, and was delivered through a unique partnership of the South Bristol Church and Community Trust, Hartcliffe and Withywood Community Partnership, Bristol City Council and Bristol Primary Care Trust.

Speaking after ribbon-cutting ceremony, Dawn said:

"This centre really is superb. In so many ways, it meets the local needs identified in 2001 through the Trust's community consultation - and as such, it will play a central role in the life of Withywood for many years to come".

"Clearly, this could never have happened without money, so I would like to say a huge thank you on behalf of the local community to the twenty-five or so organisations that not only helped to fund this project, but who so positively embraced the unique partnership on which it is based".

"However, we most certainly would not be standing in this room today if it was not for the local residents and organisations, who did not simply identify the need for a centre and then wait for it to happen, but who worked so energetically and imaginatively to find a solution. They never allowed the many challenges and hurdles along the way to get the better of them, so I hope they are justly proud of the role they played in making this happen".

"These really are exciting times to be the MP for Bristol South. Only yesterday I was at the ‘topping out’ ceremony at the Knowle West Media Centre. Today, I am here. In a few weeks time I will be pushing my trolley round the brand new Morrisons at Symes; and in a matter of months I hope to be able to look round our brand new secondary schools in Hartcliffe and Withywood, and see cranes over Hengrove Park, building our South Bristol Hospital, Healthplex and Skills Academy".

"The common theme running through all of these great developments is not just millions of pounds of government investment, alongside contributions from the City Council, and the private and voluntary sectors – important though this clearly is. What sets these developments apart from virtually all that went before is the fact that the community do not simply support, but actively engage – whether on building design or shaping services – in deciding how the millions is spent".

"By matching adequate investment and community involvement in this way, I am confident that we are – together – really making a difference to the lives of thousands of people in Bristol South".  

[8 October 2007] 

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