And that vision is starting to become reality
The Sharks have been working to create a permanent home or our own in Southall for quite sometime, we could see the potential of converting disused garages and undercroft in to a thriving Community based Canoe Club with gym and more.
In to this
It takes a lot of work and requires a lot of support, first of all we had to get people on board, convince them that it was not just viable but it would enhance the area, improve facilities and the physical environment. Both Ealing Council and Catalyst Housing came onboard very quickly and it is only because of their support and effort that we are able to progress.
That was the beginning, next step was to get the local community on board, through consultations, the support for the idea was very positive, then we needed, plans, money and permission, and just getting plans and permission cost money! But with Ealing and Catalyst onboard we were in a good place to get help. The Sharks cannot thank either organisation enough for the support and help we have been given. They have organised the consultation, the plans and Catalyst particularly the funding.
We are now moving forward
First thing was to clear the garages and make them secure for storing boats.
Then claim the territory and get some kit in there
This is just the beginning, Catalyst Housing have arranged funding for the project, with a huge investment from the Mayor of London, through the Good Growth Fund. The Sharks have also successfully bid for money from Sport England to pay for the Community Gym.
Where we are at
At the moment there are still a few details to finalise, but things are progressing, lockdown obviously lost us a few months, but even during that time we were holding video meetings to try and get things lined up so work could start as soon as possible. There is a lot to do.
Our Thursday sessions now operate from this location, why not come along and see what we are doing and have a go? We are onsite from 5pm.
This is the site from the canal
We will be making a proper entrance, with good access for all and landscape the area, but in the meantime we are accessing the canal through the smaller entrance, which is working well.
This is happening
Behind the scenes there is a lot going on, and we will keep you up to date with developments as we move forward, we would like to thank the officers of Ealing Council and Catalyst Housing, whom have been inspiring in sharing our vision and have done a lot of work. We would also like to thank staff at Sport England for their support in helping us navigate through the application to secure funding.We also thank staff at British Canoeing, for their help and advice.
We would also like to thank the people who live in this part of Southall for their support and encouragement. This is happening and it is going to be inspired.
We will keep a picture diary as a record of the transformation, we would like to hear from you; email us firstname.lastname@example.org, or call us on 07951 770241. Be part of the vision, be part of our future, get involved and help us to create the best Canoe Club ever, because Southall deserves the best!