Plans for a new community centre in Risca have been given a further boost after senior councillors gave their backing to the project.
Ty Sign Community Hall and Resource Centre has already been given planning permission to build on the estate’s Spar playing fields in Holly Road, despite significant local objection.
Outstanding funding bids worth £750,000 would be “strengthened” if Caerphilly County Borough Council, as the landowner, demonstrated support for the scheme.
This was given unanimously at a cabinet meeting on March 27, with deputy leader Sean Morgan saying: “We would be ignoring people’s ambitions if we weren’t prepared to look into the feasibility of this.”
The new centre, which would be run by a charity of the same name, promises a main hall, lobby, meeting room, garden and a 19-space car park.
It had been planned further along Holly Road but after receiving 200 objections, the proposed development was moved to “avoid any neighbour conflict”.
Ty Sign’s community will be invited to use the new space for private functions, but it will primarily be used to house the 5th Risca Scout Group and the Agape Community Church.
Both groups had previously been based at the Channel View community centre, which has since closed after falling into disrepair.
The council’s other deputy leader, Cllr Barbara Jones, described the building as a “liability”.
The Ty Sign Community Hall and Resource Centre have applied to the Big Lottery ‘People and Places Grant’ for £500,000 and to the Welsh Government Community Facilities Grant for £250,000.
Rob Hartshorn, head of public protection, community and leisure services, said a further report would be brought before members if funding was secured.
“This is just another stepping stone in the process, there’s no absolute commitment in this,” he added.
The meeting heard that the charity could still seek other funding if their bids were unsuccessful.