Glasgow's First Citizen celebrates the newly approved £3.2M community hub in Milton being given the green light.
Lord Provost Jacqueline McLaren was joined on the site of the former Glasgow School for the Deaf at Shapinsay Street by partners who helped her secure millions of pounds to regenerate her Canal ward. The land will now make way for a new nursery and community centre following the proposal being given planning permission.
The Lord Provost said: "It's fantastic to have been given the go ahead for this vital resource. It's something that's badly needed and I'm so proud and excited that work is finally starting. It's going to make a huge difference to the people living here.
"It's going to be a flagship resource bringing together partners from the council's education service, the Third Sector and Glasgow Caledonian University for the very first time. It's something we can all be hugely proud of and I'm confident it will become the template for future, similar community assets."
The Lord Provost's success, as a local councillor, in attracting Scottish Government Funding totalling £1.4m, bolstering an initial award of £800,000, in partnership with North United Communities (NUC) earned her a Community Champion Award back in 2021 at the Local Government Information Unit (LGiU) Scotland Councillor Awards. In recognition of her hard work and dedication to her community.
Her efforts were also highlighted in the House of Commons with the tabling of an Early Day Motion on 13 December 2021 stating:
That this House congratulates Bailie Jacqueline McLaren on winning the Community Champion award at the 2021 Local Government Information Unit (LGiU) Scotland Councillor Awards for her hard work and dedication to her community; celebrates her successes including securing £800,000 funding from the Scottish Government in partnership with North United Communities for the creation of a new services hub in Milton; looks forward to seeing the continued regeneration of Canal Ward in partnership with the fantastic local community groups in the area; and recognises that the efforts of local councillors such as Bailie McLaren are often overlooked but are vitally important to thriving communities and neighbourhoods.
NUC , will be the main tenant within the community section of the facility officially known as the North Glasgow Community Hub and Nursery. There are also dedicated offices for Glasgow Caledonian University and local community group Love Milton.
Jill Mackay CEO of North United Communities said: "I'm just so excited and thrilled for everyone in the community. They convinced the Scottish government there was this need to be met.
"They convinced the decision makers their community was worth investing in. This new facility is really the culmination of their hard work spanning more than five years.
"The floor in our old hut collapsed and that was really the catalyst to bid for a new centre. I can't quite believe it's finally happening. It's particularly important for our young people to have a safe space and place. This is for them, and they deserve it."
Lynn Sheridan, Glasgow Caledonian University's Social Work Lecturer and hub project lead, said: "Glasgow Caledonian University is delighted to be a partner in the North Glasgow Community Hub project in Milton along with Glasgow City Council and North United Communities."
Intervention from Glasgow Caledonian University was instrumental in the bid application succeeding. Lynn Sheridan, Professor Stephen Webb and Dr Sharon Jackson helped the community put together a much bolder and more ambitious plan.
Lynn added: "We're excited to be part of this project and to bring the University's work closer to the local community. We will be consulting with residents in the New Year on what health and wellbeing services they would like to see the University introduce to the new Hub, like podiatry, eyecare health, dietetics and social work."