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Sapphire Jubilee Community Centre in Collier Row opens to the public

PUBLISHED: 18:00 02 February 2018

Leader of the Council, Councillor Roger Ramsey, Deputy Leader of the Council, Councillor Damian White, Mayor of Havering, Councillor Linda Van den Hende and MP for Romford, Andrew Rosindell opening the Sapphire Jubilee Community Centre

Leader of the Council, Councillor Roger Ramsey, Deputy Leader of the Council, Councillor Damian White, Mayor of Havering, Councillor Linda Van den Hende and MP for Romford, Andrew Rosindell opening the Sapphire Jubilee Community Centre

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An eco-friendly community centre for residents of Havering opened to the public today.

Leader of the Council, Councillor Roger Ramsey, Deputy Leader of the Council, Councillor Damian White, Mayor of Havering, Councillor Linda Van den Hende and MP for Romford, Andrew Rosindell opening the Sapphire Jubilee Community CentreLeader of the Council, Councillor Roger Ramsey, Deputy Leader of the Council, Councillor Damian White, Mayor of Havering, Councillor Linda Van den Hende and MP for Romford, Andrew Rosindell opening the Sapphire Jubilee Community Centre

MP Andrew Rosindell, the leader of the council, Cllr Roger Ramsey, and Cllr Damian White opened the Sapphire Jubilee Community Centre in Bolberry Road on Friday, February 2, with the Mayor of Havering, Cllr Linda Van den Hende performing the special cutting the ribbon ceremony.

The Romford MP said: “For a long time I’ve said that this community needs to be given the recognition it deserves.

“Today I am proud to see we have made sure this part of Collier Row has been taken care of and given the support our community really deserves.

“It gives me, and the Madame Mayor enormous pleasure to declare the Sapphire Jubilee centre officially open.”

The community centre includes a large hall for events, alongside a kitchen, toilets and an office.

A play area for children next to the building, was partly funded through the Housing Revenue Account as well as a £10,000 grant from the Tesco Bag of Help fund.

Cllr Ramsey said: “It’s marvellous to be able to provide this centre through our housing department at no cost to the council tax payer.

“It demonstrates what councils can do. This is a real movement in the right direction of regeneration.”

The new centre is carbon neutral with solar panels contributing to the power in the building.

A ground source heat pump with a bore hole up to 140m into the earth will provide heating for the centre and rainwater capture so the grey water can be used for flushing toilets and watering the landscaping areas.

The Mayor added: “I think it’s an amazing facility for the community. They have already got people booked, so it’s obviously already making an impact.

“It’s a very eco friendly building, and the fact that it has the open play area, means it’s ideal for the creche.”

Father Hingley, vicar of St. Alban’s church, advised on the commissioning of the plaque in the centre.

He said: “The plaque is designed on the legend of Edward the Confessor. He was supposed to have said to a pauper, ‘have a ring’ and this is wherethe name Havering comes from. It’s now part of Havering’s coat of arms.

“Havering is usually pictured with a ruby, but we exchanged it with a sapphire for the jubilee.”

Father Hingley explained that the facets in the plaque are of a pyramid shape to represent the triangular shape of the roofs of the houses in the area.

“It represents the community. We wanted to create a work of art, we wanted something exceptional to match the centre,” said Father Hingley.

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