KEYS for a highly anticipated new community centre have been handed over for groups and classes to enjoy.

Basingstoke and Deane Borough Council’s cabinet member for communities and community safety Cllr Simon Bound handed over the keys to members of the Hatch Warren and Beggarwood Community Association (HWBCA).

The modern centre, which has been designed to blend in with the natural landscape at Beggarwood Park, will open to the public at a later date.

The new facility will have rooms for meetings, services and events for people of all ages, as well as a community café.

People can now have their say on how the new centre will be run and will be able to book the new facility for activities or events such as birthday parties, group meetings or other functions.

Volunteers are also being sought to help manage the centre, which will be run by the association on a daily basis.

After handing over the keys to HWBCA, Cllr Bound said: “I am delighted to officially hand over the keys to this wonderful new community centre to local people and wish the association every success for the future.

“Local residents, from the very young to the elderly, will benefit greatly from the facility. A range of activities will be on offer and many types of events can be enjoyed in this delightful park setting.”

He added: “I would urge anybody who is interested in having their say on how the facility is managed to become a trustee or volunteer to help to ensure that the centre continues to prosper in the years ahead.”

The contemporary building has been made possible thanks to of £760,000 funding from the borough council, which is received from developer’s contributions.

For more information, or to volunteer as a trustee, contact Hatch Warren and Beggarwood Community Association on 01256 811262, email or visit