Threeways take over former school site

An old school site in Ovenden has undergone England’s largest community asset transfer from local authority to a non-proft organisation.

The former Ridings school in Ovenden, Halifax, which has stood desolate since 2009, was transferred to Threeways on June 3.

At the Threeways Centre, Ovenden (formerly The Ridings School) from the left, director Martin Durgan, chief operating officer Colin Davies and site manager Roy Pearson.

At the Threeways Centre, Ovenden (formerly The Ridings School) from the left, director Martin Durgan, chief operating officer Colin Davies and site manager Roy Pearson.

The site currently operates a sports centre that will run discounted activities this summer. The rest of the development will open in phases from June 2014- July 2015.

The Ovenden community hub will boast health and fitness facilities and workshops; education and training skills; entertainment and dining.

Director of Threeways Martin Durgen said: “There’s been such a warm response from local people who’ve got involved after passing by. We’re relying on volunteers and community involvement. We want people to take ownership and develop the site as a community hub.”

Threeways plan to work with Calderdale College in creating work-placements in a strategy for youth employment in north Halifax.

Chief operating officer Colin Davies said phase one will include community space, church and meeting rooms, dining facilities and is expected to be open by June 2014. Phase two, scheduled to open by July 2015, will include a business incubator with office space and facilities.

Presently, a sports centre offers a range of classes and sports. Threeways also plan summer activities along with a BBQ in August.