Building work on a new community hub at St Luke’s Holbeck, to help transform the estate of Holbeck and Beeston Hill, has begun.
Over a hundred people from the local estate packed the church for a special celebration, which included an international meal, to mark that start of these works. The first bit of turf was also cut by St Luke’s longest serving congregational member, 95 year old Mary Allinson.
“The building project is starting - but whilst the brickies, plasterers and electricians move in - the change we really want to focus on is about growing our local community,” said The Revd Canon Alistair Kaye, vicar of St Luke’s Holbeck.
“Nationally in the bottom 1% for social deprivation, LS11 often hits the headlines for all the wrong reasons and we would like to work with others to help transform our local estate.”
Work on a community project began months ago when the church decided to go out and complete a survey, asking nearby people, organisations and public bodies what they wanted in the area.
Thanks to the generosity and hard work of local people, and significant grants from organisations like “Reaching Communities”, St Luke’s were able to raise a total of £750, 000 to enable building work on a community hub to begin.
Through refurbished meeting rooms, a revamped IT suite and a community kitchen the church hope to work with partners to run a drop-in service, youth and children’s work, and social cohesion and employability projects for the local area.
“We are so grateful to St Luke’s School Beeston Hill who will host our Sunday worship while the building work takes place, and Beeston Hill United Free Church, who will be hosting our projects,” said Alistair Kaye.
“Please pray for us in the coming months as we seek as a church to be Good News on our South Leeds estate.”