SCOUTS in Codnor are celebrating after finding a permanent home in a former miners’ welfare bungalow.
An application to convert the steward’s bungalow, on Goose Lane, by Darren Hobson, treasurer of the 3rd Codnor Scout Group, was approved at Amber Valley Borough Council’s planning meeting on Monday, May 16.
Councillor Chris Emmas-Williams, who backed the application, said the decision would “provide a much needed solid built headquarters” for the Scouts. He said: “They have been fighting a losing battle with their ageing property, which requires a new roof, so this will be an ideal solution to their problems.”
Darren said: “It’s good news. Both Cllr Chris Emmas-Williams and Cllr George Parkes have been very good to us.
“We wouldn’t have been able to do this project without the help that the Derbyshire Community Foundation have given. The bungalow is ideal for the Scouts and they have raised £7,000 – along with funding – over the past 12 months to make the building safe and convert it to meet their needs.”
He said the Scouts were unable to raise enough funds to rebuild the existing hall because of the current economic climate.
The Scouts have been based at a hut on Alfreton Road recreation ground, in Codnor, for over 20 years, with more than 40 young people meeting there weekly. Now they will lease the bungalow from the Codnor Charitable Sports Trust who have a 25-year-lease from owners Coal Industry Social Welfare Organisation (CISWO).
Planning officers had backed the proposal because the “re-use of an existing building is considered to be appropriate development” in the Greenbelt. In a report they said the development “would help to secure the continuing stewardship of land and the alternative to re-use may be a building that is left vacant and prone to vandalism and dereliction.”
Darren added: “Building work is expected to commence in early June. The cost of refurbishing the bungalow is a fraction of that needed to rebuild at the recreation ground.
“Scouts are now busy raising funds to replace the kitchen, install new toilet facilities and a disabled access ramp so other groups can use it.
“In time they hope to convert part of the garden into raised vegetable beds to teach the Beavers, Cubs and Scouts about growing and cooking food.”
To find out more about Codnor Scouts e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.