The History of
Mansfield Woodhouse Community Development Group
2004 - 2005 - 2006 - 2007 - 2008 - 2009 - 2010 - 2011
The community of Mansfield Woodhouse was deemed to be in a crisis situation due to the loss of employment with the closure of the local coal mines. The area needed to undergo a process of regeneration.
After a series of public meetings, the list of prioritised projects was highlighted and the Mansfield Woodhouse Community Development Group (MWCDG) was formed to assist in the regeneration of the area.
A Partnership was formed to support the regeneration of Mansfield Woodhouse; Mansfield Diamond Partnership, Mansfield Community and Voluntary Service (MCVS), Nottinghamshire County Council (NCC), Mansfield District Council (MDC) and West Nottinghamshire College (WNC).
A Crime and Safety sub-group of MWCDG was formed to focus on local issues of community safety and crime reduction measures. Later, this group was expanded to also include local environmental issues.
The youth group section of MWCDG had the idea of having a Cyber Café. They worked on the design and a bid was submitted to the National Lottery.
A Mardi Gras Event was held and this was the first of many community events organised by MWCDG.
After much planning and preparation, refurbishment of the old Adult School / Clinic on Park Road was completed and it became the Park Road Resource Centre (PRRC), the new home of MWCDG!
After successfully gaining National Lottery funding, the Cyber Café was added to the refurbishment of the PRRC.
Planning permission was granted to the PRRC for the opening of a crèche facility.
A community committee, set up to fundraise for CCTV cameras to cover Mansfield Woodhouse, achieved their target.
A local newsletter, “The Woodhouse Warbler”, was launched in November and consisted of eight pages. Although initially a courier firm was engaged to deliver the Warbler to the whole community, it soon became clear that volunteer deliverers would be more reliable. In its first year the Warbler received the Nottinghamshire News award.
Mansfield Woodhouse Community Development Group adopted the Wolfhunt man as its logo.
MWCDG became a company limited by guarantee.
The decision was taken to close the Cyber Café due to decreasing usage and financial generation. It was agreed with WNC they would use the facility as a Learning Centre as locally the demand for IT learning was increasing.
The Play Park Crèche was launched with the aid of start up finance from the Local Community Fund. This gave parents of young children the opportunity to access learning programmes in the centre knowing their children were being cared for in a safe and stimulating environment. It also offered respite for parents needing to keep appointments or just to have some spare time.
Mansfield Woodhouse Community Development Group became a registered charity. Therefore, the management committee then became Trustees of the charity and Directors of the company.
The Play Park Crèche became Ofsted registered.
A three year funding package was acquired with a consortium of funders, Allowing MWCDG to continue their community work.
In partnership with Mansfield Community and Voluntary Service (MCVS), funding was secured for a new project called Hard to Reach. MWCDG hosted and managed the project.
The PRRC office was extended and refurbished to create a larger working environment.
A wide range of education opportunities were made available. Room hire was gradually helping to support income, beneficial in the move towards self-sustainability.
The welcome to Mansfield Woodhouse signs were installed on the approach roads to the village.
A funding package was acquired from the Coalfields Regeneration Trust (CRT) providing much needed revenue funding for a further two and a half years.
Consultation work on behalf of Midland Landfill Limited ranging from organising meetings to delivering flyers commenced. The main issues of concern were access to and from the site and negotiating timescales for the filling of the quarry.
To celebrate ten years of MWCDG, a 'This is Your Life' booklet was presented by Patrick McGrath at the Annual General Meeting.
A feasibility study was completed for the development of Yeoman Hill Park. Using the study as a blue print, improvements to the park have been achieved. The driving force for these improvements has been the Yeoman Hill Park sub-group.
A lease for two offices was agreed with NCC, this would provide a base for Mansfield Community Development Project workers.
A contract was awarded to MWCDG to manage the Neighbourhood Business Incubation Units (NBIU) on behalf of Mansfield District Council.
The trading arm company of MWCDG, Wolfhunt Enterprises Limited (WE Ltd), was setup.
The Manor School Specialist Sports College applied for funding from NCC Children's Fund to run an Extended Services project. MWCDG was the chosen organisation for hosting the project and Participation Worker.
LEGI Funding was applied for by a consortium of Bolsover, Ashfield and Mansfield District Councils to provide Business Coaches to areas within their remits. MWCDG successfully submitted a tender to host the workers for Mansfield Woodhouse and Warsop.
The CRT funding came to an end the decision to close the Play Park Crèche was taken purely for economic reasons.
Even though this was a difficult year, Staff and Directors/Trustees worked closely together and ensured the continuation of MWCDG.
A Friends of Yeoman Hill Park group was set up.
The Volunteers into Employment Project was launched, the aim was to help local people back into employment through the volunteering route.
Through the Friends of Yeoman Hill Park, the bandstand was refurbished, new play equipment installed on the playground, a community garden was created, new benches designed and plans to renew the pathways were afoot.
The contract to manage the NBIU came to an end in March and MDC decided to take the work in-house. Due to a change in power at County Hall, NCC had to give notice on their office lease so subsequently they moved out in June. WNC withdraw from the Learning Centre due to funding restrictions.
MWCDG celebrated fifteen years of operation by compiling a short video of the group's history. This was to be shown at the fifteenth Annual General Meeting.
The Woodhouse Warbler held a celebration evening for all involved in the production and distribution of the newsletter. The celebration was to honour ten years of publication.
After the termination of the local Area Partnership, MWCDG invited some of the members to join their Crime, Environment and Safety group. It was decided to widen the parameters and rename the group ‘Community Action Forum’.