Keighley’s long-standing community organisation, the Sangat Centre, is undergoing a major renovation after securing a substantial funding of £230,000 from the Keighley Town Deal Board. The much-needed funding will be utilised for essential refurbishments to upgrade the Marlborough Street premises, where the organisation has been based for over two decades.

The Sangat Centre has been a vital hub for the community, offering a range of services including social day care, adult education activities, youth programs, holiday playschemes, and more. With the venue showing signs of wear and tear, urgent modernisation was necessary to ensure the organisation could continue serving the hundreds of people who rely on its facilities each week.

Bradford Council’s executive member for regeneration, planning and transport, Councillor Alex Ross-Shaw, said: “Keighley residents deserve a building that reflects the character of the local community.

“Through the Towns Fund, the Sangat Centre will be modernised to be energy efficient, meet the digital and online needs of service users and be an accessible, practical environment for an extensive range of crucial community services.”

Ian Hayfield, Chair of Keighley’s Town Deal Board, highlighted the significance of the renovation. He explained that the refurbishment would allow the Sangat Centre to operate more efficiently and effectively, ensuring it remains a sustainable and productive establishment for years to come.

The renovation project is anticipated to last approximately two years, during which time the centre will remain open to the public as usual. Progress is already underway, with new flooring and a new roof already installed. Notable features of the modernisation include the addition of a new IT suite and a mezzanine floor.

Riasat Ali, the Sangat Centre Manager, expressed his gratitude for the opportunity to properly upgrade the building. He described the constant need for repairs, including patching up leaks and dealing with heating, boiler, and electrical issues. The renovation project eliminates the need for piecemeal repairs and allows the centre to expand its provision, accommodating even more people who wish to avail themselves of their services. Ali also emphasised the centre’s commitment to the local community by employing local tradespeople for the renovation work, ensuring that the funds benefit the area directly.

In addition to the generous £230,000 funding from the Keighley Town Deal Board, the Sangat Centre has also received £140,000 of match funding from the Community Ownership Fund towards the refurbishment.

The Sangat Centre’s transformation reflects a promising future for the organisation, aligning its vision with the needs and aspirations of its service users and the community it serves. With the renovation well underway, the Sangat Centre aims to enhance its offerings and welcome an even larger number of individuals seeking their services.