Plans for a fully revamped community centre in Perth have been given a major boost as Letham4all secured a £750,000 grant towards their regeneration project this week.
Millions of pounds had been put aside by Perth and Kinross Council to refurbish and extend the Letham Centre on Tweedsmuir Road.
But plans were shelved as cuts were made and council-backed sports providers LiveActive Leisure vacated the building.
Now run by neighbourhood charity Letham4all, the group celebrated being awarded £1m in Scottish Government funding earlier this year. Just over £1.25m in council funding is still available for the project.
And last week, the group managed to secure another £750,000 grant through National Lottery funding.
Almost two years to the day from when funding was cut, all the additional cash is now in place to complete the project as initially planned.
The National Lottery award will not only top up the shortfall in the capital funding required, but also cover revenue costs for Letham4All for the next two years.
The charity will use the funding to creating an accessible community space which will include multi-purpose activity areas, cafe, soft play, a recently-launched community gym and meeting rooms.
Charity chairman Jon Kidd said: “We are delighted with this award from the National Lottery Community Fund.
“The difference this will make to our community cannot be adequately put into words.
“This funding will breathe life into the community hub through total refurbishment and allow us to engage with so many more people in a meaningful and productive way to tackle the inequalities faced by our communities.”
Also in the charity’s sights is an NHS treatment room which could provide some basic medical services.
Letham routinely gains low scores in deprivation indexes, with a key factor being the lack of GP surgeries in the neighbourhood.
The charity have been working tirelessly throughout lockdown serving as a foodbank and volunteers have been delivering food parcels across Perth.
Last week, outpatient nurses from Perth Royal Infirmary and Ninewells Hospital donated bags of food, toiletries and colouring books after setting up a collection point at their NHS bases.