The leaders of both Chorley Council and Lancashire County Council joined representatives from OnSide and The Arts Partnership to express their excitement and commitment to Chorley’s new Youth Zone last week.
The go-ahead for a Youth Zone to be delivered in Chorley was granted late last year which would mean a proposed site on Railway Street, where The Arts Partnership and Leigh Arms currently stand.
The exciting plans would see the 21st century state-of-the-art facility open seven-days-a-week with more than 10 activities taking place at the same time.
And with that prospect in mind, the leaders of both council’s united alongside OnSide and The Arts Partnership to discuss how the unique partnership will work together to deliver Chorley’s next generation youth facility.
Councillor Alistair Bradley, Leader of Chorley Council, said of the partnership: “I am delighted we have got to this stage as a partnership between the four organisations. The young people of Chorley and the surrounding areas, have been short changed in the past, but this is now set to change. Youth provision isn’t how it should be and our young people deserve better. We need to deliver this Youth Zone as partners and the more we work together, the better it will be for our young people. The Youth Zone is an ideal location, near to the bus and train stations and I am confident we can all deliver a world class facility.”
Jennifer Mein, Leader of Lancashire County Council said: “This is a really interesting project that we are working on with the other partners. The visions we all have really do join together. This project is about making sure that Chorley’s young people have somewhere exciting to go, where they can get advice and enjoy activities with their friends. Growing up and making the change from teenager to young adult can be tough but the Chorley Youth Zone will provide somewhere to help young people do that successfully.”
The Youth Zone would include a sports hall, performing arts area, martial arts space, a base for The Arts Partnership, fitness suite, football pitch and other activity rooms. Young people will also be able to get support and advice on matters such as careers, education and lifestyles.
Gwynne Furlong, Chairman of The Arts Partnership, said: “We started back in 1999 to bring music, arts, dance and drama to the local community. 10,000 young people have passed through our doors over the last 10 years, but this building (Chorley Community Centre) is past its best and we are now thrilled we could end up with a building that’s fit for the future, thanks to OnSide and the two councils.”
This is the first time OnSide have worked with a number of partners to deliver a Youth Zone, but that is a prospect, Chairman Bill Holroyd CBE DL is looking forward to, he said:
“This is a really important day for us. Our objective is to give young people inspiring and safe places to go. The only way forward is to work in partnership. Us doing so, will put a facility in place that young people of Chorley will be proud of. I am so chuffed this is going ahead and thank you to all concerned for making it happen.”