We need your help to ensure that the Allendale Centre – Wimborne Minster’s community centre for over 45 years - can get back on its feet when the shutdown restrictions begin to ease and be there to support the rest of the community to get back on to theirs.
The Allendale Centre is a vibrant community facility located at the heart of Wimborne Minster. Opened in 1974, the centre is maintained and managed by the Wimborne & District Community Association, a registered charity. Since being on the brink of imminent closure 6 years ago, the new, and still present, Management team and Trustees have worked tirelessly to create a thriving community centre and, following a series of refurbishments, one with modern and functionable facilities suitable for the requirements of the 21st century.
The centre provides space for many community clubs, groups and organisations to meet, as well as for small, independent businesses to run classes, training sessions and children’s activities. The NHS hold regular blood donation sessions here throughout the year and Flu Clinics during the winter months. A very popular party, wedding and celebration venue, with two onsite bars, the Allendale also hosts live music events - including large choirs and big bands, Theatre shows (both professional and community based), business conferences and craft, antique and wedding fairs. The Allendale Centre is also involved in many festivals held in Wimborne Minster, including the Beer Festival, History Festival, Folk Festival, Literary Festival and Green Festival.
The monthly Lunch and Film Clubs, run by the WDCA, regularly sell out and are attended by a wide variety of the community, including residents of local care homes. A Golden Oldie film in the afternoon, accompanied by tea and cakes – with linen table clothes and fine bone china cups & saucers of course – all very traditional!
The Allendale Centre also includes a well utilised small soft play for under 5’s as well as a vibro-plate exercise centre – both managed by the charity.Wimborne’s Community Fridge is located at the Centre, as well as a drop off point for the food bank. The local dairy has a fresh milk vending machine located in the foyer, where you will also find recycling facilities and a free water refill station, and on the front of the building there is a community funded defibrillator.
The onsite café – Café @ the Allendale – is a fantastic, independently managed additional facility with a beautiful river side location that is always buzzing with activity.Throughout the Covid-19 shutdown, the café has been central to the efforts throughout the Wimborne Minster community to ensure that both cooked meals and general food provisions are available to everyone who needs them, whether because of financial circumstance or health reasons. With the support of many other local businesses, from pubs and restaurants, to supermarkets and independent food traders, the café’s amazing team of volunteers have delivered free meals, drinks, cakes and provisions to over 100 people a day as well as providing a community larder to allow people to come in and stock up on provisions that are so desperately needed at this time.
With the Covid-19 restrictions, the Allendale Centre was forced to close, losing the vital income streams that not only allow the charity to keep the community centre open and functioning, but more importantly allow us to be there to provide support to the surrounding community to move forward through these ever changing times without feeling they are on their own.
We are truly proud of what we have created at the Allendale Centre – a centre fit for the 21st century but with good old-fashioned community values. Without our amazing team of dedicated staff and volunteers getting us to where we are now, Wimborne would already have lost this facility, and now we invite you to become a part of this team by making a donation – however small - to ensure that we can still be here to celebrate 50 years in 2024!