Hornsey Vale is a community hub run for, and by, people in Haringey.
Every week in the Centre, we host more than 60 different classes and activities led by partners, community groups and local freelancers. From martial arts and toddler football, to badminton and Zumba, there’s lots going on to support fitness and wellbeing. Specialist classes target people with particular conditions such as Multiple Sclerosis, or those living with lung problems. We proudly partner with Counselling Initiatives to host low-cost talking-therapies with trainee volunteers.
There’s creativity too. We host three different adult art classes and poetry. A range of classes support children to sing, dance and play, and give parents and carers the chance to connect. The University of the Third Age organise study groups from the Centre.
Subsidised by room hire, we organise a number of low cost events and socials throughout the year. Our Lunch Club provides a hot meal, gentle exercise and an opportunity to meet new people on the first Wednesday of the month. And check out our new Sunday Salsa Socials.
We are currently recruiting a new Administrative Assistant. Interviews are in February 2020 and we hope to announce our new appointment soon.
The Community Centre is managed by the twelve local residents who make up the Hornsey Vale Community Association’s management committee. The management committee is responsible for ensuring the Centre is well run, keeps to its charitable objectives and has sound financial management.
Members of the Committee apply and are appointed based on their skills and interest in the Centre; some places are held for regular Centre users. The Chair, Secretary and Treasurer are elected at our Annual General Meeting.
Current members of the management committee are: Debra Mendes (Chair), Duncan Kerr (Company Secretary), Joanne Ng (Treasurer), Lynne Brackley, Bob Packham, Pien Maltz-Klaar, Tilly Williams.
A number of local businesses support our projects and events through in-kind donations and discounts.
In particular Broadway Fruiters, Freemans Butchers and Dunn’s Bakery give us a great discount in support of our monthly Community Lunch Club for the over 50s.
TSB Partner Awards
As our the Crouch TSB branch’s Partner staff at the bank are doing a series of fundraising activities for the Centre over 2015 and volunteering to help with projects and activities throughout the year.
Hornsey Parochial Charities
Hornsey Parochial Charities have recently awarded the Community centre a £700 grant towards the running costs of the centre’s Active Age programme throughout 2015.
Waitrose Community Matters
Work with HAIL to run our little Community Café. HAIL have been long standing users of the Centre and some of their other project groups can be seen at our events.
Action for Kids
Action for Kids support 6 volunteers with learning difficulties who work in our Community Café. AfC also use the centre for a number of other activities and take part in lots of our community events.
Age UK Haringey support a number of groups that use our centre, and we work closely with the Caring Connections project to provide a weekly friendship group for those living with lon-term health conditions
MS – Haringey
The local Haringey branch of the MS Society work with us to support a ‘MS Exercising Together Group’ in the centre. The weekly class offers prescribed exercise programs tailored to individual needs, supported by a MS physiotherapist.
Transition Crouch End
Transition Crouch End is par of the international Transition movement is all about local community action on living sustainability in the era of climate change and expensive energy. Transition Crouch End created our tyre garden, organize events with us and general help us to be green!
Friends of Stationer’s Park
Our wonderful neighbouring garden is very much part of our community. We work with the Friends to run events in the park in the summer months.
Haringey Council owns the Centre building and is thereby our Landlord. We were also awarded a Haringey Invest Fund Grant in 2012 support the Outreach programme for three years.
Hornsey Vale Community Association has been running the Community Centre since 1991. When Stationers School was closed in 1983, Haringey Council proposed it should be turned into a local community centre, following pressure from local residents. Many local people became involved in a Steering Group to take it forward. But, due to financial pressures, the Council sold off part of the building – the land was eventually used for building Abyssinia Court Close Care development by Hornsey Housing Trust. Local people campaigned long and hard for the remaining part of the old school to be kept and turned into a community centre.
In fact, the Council used the building for a short time for Hornsey Ridge After School Club. The Steering Group had by then formed Hornsey Vale Community Association, and had very limited use of the building. As a result of further financial pressure, the Council decided it could not run the centre and presented the Community Association with an option to take it over and run it. A business plan was drawn up and accepted by the Council in early 1991, and we were given the keys to the building in April of that year.
Originally the Centre was known as Stationers Community Centre, as Stationers School (the original building) had been in the area for a long time, and the adjacent park had been called Stationers Park. The name was changed to Hornsey Vale Community Association when the building re-opened in May 2000.
Between 1991 and 2000, the Centre was run on an entirely voluntary basis with one employee: a part-time cleaner. All the bookings, admin and other work were carried out by members of the Management Committee. As the work increased it was no longer viable to run the Centre on this voluntary basis. The condition of the building was also deteriorating. So we applied to the National Lottery Charities Board (now known as the Community Fund) for as grant to refurbish the building and employ a Co-ordinator. Our second application was successful. The building was closed for refurbishment and re-opened in May 2000 with a May Gala.
As a result of the building work, the Centre is fully accessible for wheelchair users and is one of the few Polling Stations accessible for disabled people during elections. Additional meeting and storage space was also added.
Hornsey Vale Community Centre and the Association is dependent on individuals from the local community giving their time freely – whether it’s to serve on the management committee, distribute leaflets, help at events or event to unblock the occasional butter. If you would like to volunteer in the Centre, or offer your expertise on matters of finance, fundraising or strategic planning, do contact us.
Alternatively you can support the Centre but using it as a valuable community asset. Join one of the regular classes, book the hall for a birthday party, or tell your friends about the huge range of activities going on here. Come along to our community events or pop in to enjoy tea and cake in our friendly Community Café.
As we are a small local charity we would also gratefully receive any donations to support the maintenance of the building, help produce our regular newsletter to let people know what we’re up to, or enable us to give space to vulnerable groups who wish to start up a regular class.
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