Cullompton community centre opens

Cullompton community centre
Image caption There were no planning objections to the community centre's architectural style

A £1.5m community centre has opened in east Devon.

The contemporary building in Cullompton has replaced the St Andrew's Church hall.

Centre managers said more than 30 organisations had expressed an interest in using the building, which has seating for up to 180 in its main hall.

Although it is in a conservation area, there were no planning objections to its contemporary style.

The town has been badly affected by the economic downturn, seeing a number of shops and businesses close, but people behind the centre believe the new building heralds better times.

Simon Friend, of the centre, said: "It really feels that regeneration is beginning to happen.

"We hope that people who come here for training days, conferences, classes, wedding parties or whatever will spill out on to the high street."

Funding for the centre included a £700,000 grant from the South West Regional Development Agency, as well as grants from Devon County Council and the Uffculme Environmental Fund, plus local donations.

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