New-look community hall is a winner with Milton tenants

A new-look community hall in a GHA block in Milton is bringing people together and helping them improve their skills.

IT classes at Castlebay Tenants' Hall

The newly-refurbished Castlebay Tenants’ Hall at 123 Castlebay Drive, is a focal point for residents who are using it for everything from a sewing club and computer classes, to mental health sessions and community meals.

Not forgetting pensioners’ clubs, kids’ clubs and residents’ meetings.

Volunteers from the Edrington Group helped renovate the hall recently, putting in new lighting and flooring and gave it a coat of paint.

City Building and ENGIE also helped fit out the kitchen as part of GHA’s community benefit scheme, where firms who benefit from GHA contracts give something back to the community.

Tenants also secured Lottery funding to help with the refurbishment.

The new-look hall is also used by groups including North United Communities and Castlebay Residents’ Association.

Tenant Michelle Winter said: “The hall has been completely transformed.

“It’s important to have somewhere local where people can meet up because it can be quite isolating living in the blocks.

“It is a really bright and welcoming place now.

“There’s so much going on – from kids’ clubs to employability programmes, and a breakfast club to mental wellbeing classes.

“We also organised food parcels for people at Christmas.

“The hall is really thriving.”

Stevie Smith, who runs computer classes at the hall every Wednesday, said: “We’re here to help people get online.

“We live in an increasingly digital society and people need to be online for Universal Credit, or to save money or keep in touch with family.

“There’s support out there for tenants.

“The social aspect of the classes is important too.”

GHA’s Locality Housing Director Karen McLaughlin said: “The hall is a really important for the community here in Milton and we are really pleased to see how it is thriving.

“We always want to help our tenants lead better lives and the hall is a great way for people to get together and learn new skills.”

It’s a brilliant wee group…the ladies call me a 'trainee pensioner’

Tenant Liz McNee, a regular at the new-look hall, loves going to the sewing club.

She said: “The hall is great. People can’t always get out of their flats to socialise and it’s good to be out doing things rather than sitting at home.

“There’s a breakfast club on a Friday morning, clubs for kids of different ages and computer classes too.

“I go to the sewing club on a Wednesday. The ladies are great.

“They’ve been showing me how to use the sewing machine, and helped me cut the bottom off a set of curtains I bought recently to make cushion covers.

“It’s a brilliant wee group. I’m only 59 – but they call me a trainee pensioner!

“We’re hoping to get a bingo group up and running soon.

“Having the hall is a really good way of getting people out of their homes and meeting others.”

To find out more about what’s going on at Castelbay Tenants Hall, ring 945 1540 or pop down and knock the door.

Pictured at the top of the page are tenants Helen Traynor and Liz McNee with IT tutor Steven Smith.

Wednesday, April 17, 2019