A popular village community facility has been saved thanks to a vital fundraising drive.
Officials at Seaton Sluice Community Centre had needed to raise £65,000 to buy the building and secure its future use.
Now, after a year and a half of hard work generating the required funds, the centre has been saved after the target was reached.
Secretary Alison Thomas said: “We are celebrating the tremendous achievement of 18 months fundraising which has enabled us to raise the £65,000 we needed to buy Seaton Sluice Community Centre so that it is secured for community use in perpetuity.
“It is wonderful that we have been able to purchase the centre, and we are grateful to everyone who has helped us with our fundraising efforts to get to this point.”
Seaton Sluice Community Association’s autumn fair and open day will be held on Saturday, October 11, from 10am to 4pm, to celebrate reaching the fundraising total.
“We are seeking local entries for our competitions for cakes, chutneys, jams, photography, craft and many more categories,” added Alison.
“We have around 1,000 visitors a week to the centre and groups offer activities for toddlers, youths, older people, crafts, fitness, music, history and many more activities.
“We had great local support through fundraising by many of our 40 regular user groups.
“We held coffee mornings, sponsored events and The Rotary Club of Blyth ran a duck race in Hartley Dene.
“Claire Mitchell and Liz Vuyk, our stalwart volunteers who are at the centre each morning, ran a tombola stall wherever they got the chance to do so.
“Many other of our brilliant volunteers helped out giving many hours of hard work for free at fundraising events.”
The association was also successful in receiving grants and donations from the Hadrian Trust, Catherine Cookson, Sir James Knott Trust, Christ’s Hospital in Sherburn and also Seaton Valley Council, all of which went towards the purchase.
“Our AGM in September elected eight keen people for our committee and we welcome others who may be interested in supporting us in reviewing our next five year business plan so that we go from strength to strength supporting local people with activites and fun,” added Alison.