Time to celebrate
Parents, staff and children held a party to celebrate the reopening of the former Hillside Gardens One’o clock club as an extra space for Hitherfield Children’s Centre. They flocked to the newly decorated hub to enjoy face-painting, balloons, cake and a chance to meet one another.
The Hitherfield Children’s Centre, in Hillside Gardens, between Streatham Hill and Tulse Hill, offers Stay and Play sessions for children under five. It has been renovated after an 18-month closure and is now open every weekday morning and during holidays.
Having previously been run successfully by a local community group for many years, management has now passed over to nearby Hitherfield Primary School and Children’s Centre who have worked with the Council to refurbish the building and enhance security.
Word from the Cabinet
Councillor Jane Pickard, Cabinet Member for Families and Young People, cut the ribbon to officially open the building and thanked staff, governors and parents at Hitherfield School and Children’s Centre for helping to restore the building.
She said: “It’s great that we’ve been able to reopen this club and I’m sure it will prove as popular as ever with families. Lambeth is committed to supporting these clubs and children’s centres.
“They provide a great resource for parents and stimulation for little ones, helping families during those important early developmental years. Our data shows that children’s centres have a positive effect. When children who have attended them complete the Early Years Foundation Stage assessment, they tend to do better than children who haven’t regularly attended children’s centres.”
Children’s Centre delighted
Phyllis Hayden, Children’s Centre Manager said: ”We appreciate just how much the venue has meant to this community for many, many, years particularly since it has been closed.
”We are therefore delighted that it has now been restored and that we will be delivering services and activities that will reflect the needs of the community. It has taken a while for us to get to this stage and we are grateful to the local families and wider community for their understanding, patience and support.
”We would also like to thank the Local Authority, Hitherfield School and Governors, the School Premises Team and the brilliant team of contractors who have combined their knowledge and expertise towards getting the site ready for young families in the community to enjoy once again.”
Streatham Hill ward Councillor Liz Atkins cut the wonderful cake specially made for the re-opening. She thanked parents who had been active in the one o’clock club before it closed and who had worked to ensure the building re-opened.
She said: ‘I’m really delighted that the building is open again. I hope it will continue to provide fun activities for young children for generations to come.”