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Save Paton street family center

This petition had 352 supporters

A GREENOCK mum has launched a campaign to get a local community centre re-opened.

Jackie McPherson ran a toddler group in the Paton Street building before it was damaged by fire just over a year ago.

It has been closed ever since.

Jackie says when she contacted the council she was told it would take £250,000 to get the building up to scratch.

The 37-year-old, who has a daughter Bella-Rose, who is 18 months, said: “I felt isolated as a parent and went along to a few other groups but I didn’t feel comfortable.

“So I asked the centre manager Rose McAulay and she set one up in the play room.

“Then the building was set on fire."

The group, called Paton Street Cheeky Chops, was offered a place at Grieve Road community centre but Jackie says the facilities there are not as good.

She said: “There’s only one big hall and there are no facilities.

“The cooker isn’t working and you have to microwave lunches and there’s no space to store toys.

“You can’t have more than one group running at the one time whereas in Paton Street you could have three, four and five groups.”

Jackie, who also has a son Lochlan, 17, said: “I’ve been told it will take £250,000 to bring it back to a usable condition but I don’t think it should take that amount.

“Local businesses have offered help to do up the building to get it back open.

“I’m from this area, my gran is the chairperson on the management committee and this centre is at the heart of the community.

“It’s not just our toddler group that used it, there used to an an arts and crafts group and older members of the community had a drop-in to have a cuppa and a chat.”

Jackie is now set to launch a petition calling for the centre to be re-opened.

If anyone would like to join her campaign they can contact her on 07852 972068.

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