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Weve lost everything: Youth club leader devastated after ’13 years of work’ reduced to ashes

A youth club leader has said a fire which completely destroyed the young peoples community hub in Fu..

By admin , in Cambridge , at May 2, 2018

A youth club leader has said a fire which completely destroyed the young peoples community hub in Fulbourn has left staff in tears and many others devastated.

Sarah Tennant, lead youth worker and project manager at charity Fulbourn Action 4 Youth, watched with other staff as the outbuilding at the Fulbourn Centre, off Home End, was reduced to ashes.

The blaze in the early hours of Friday morning (April 27) is believed to have been started accidentally, but the building has been left completely unusable.

(Image: Sarah Tennant)

Sarah said: “The youth club building involved in the fire has been open since 2012, and used as a youth club for local children two evenings a week.

“In my books, I counted that 200 young people have used the service since 2012.

“We had two music rooms with acoustic guitars, electric guitars, keyboards, three amps and so on – that part of the building is completely gone as well.

“You can see all the music equipment in the ashes. The building was an old mobile home, so it has been completely destroyed.

“It was so unsafe that police wouldnt let me within four feet of it.”

Sarah said she woke up on Friday with a message from a mum of one child who uses the youth club, asking if she had heard about what happened.

She then made her way to Fulbourn and saw that the building had all been cordoned off.

Sarah added: “In all honesty, were all absolutely devastated. Some of the staff members were close to tears.

“All of the hard work that has gone on…weve built that building up to such a degree that the building is such a good youth club provision for young people in the local community.

“Now all that has been reduced to ashes.

“We also recently had funding through from the Fulbourn Feast for a new PlayStation 4, a new TV and games.

The youth club building which caught on fire in Fulbourn

“We had all that in the youth club as well, and now thats all gone. Our pool table, ping pong table, games and arts and crafts too.

“Thirteen years of work and resources that you gather in my line of work was also in that building.”

Sarah said barely anything was retrievable from the fire; and the youth clubs money safe had completely disintegrated away.

It took her three hours for me to sift through change pots – where she managed to salvage and clean up about £100 in coins.

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Sarah added: “The impact has been massive for the local community here; a lot of people have been telling me about how upset they are given what has happened.

“Its been such a fantastic resource for so many young people.”

The Fulbourn Centre was created in 2006 following a refurbishment to the Townley Memorial Hall in 2006.

It includes meeting rooms and the Fulbourn Institute Sports and Social Club, with a fully licensed bar and catering facilities.

A Cambridgeshire Fire and Rescue spokeswoman said: "On Friday (27) at 3.08am, two crews from Cambridge were called to a building fire in Fulbourn.

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"Wearing breathing apparatus, firefighters used three jets and two hose reels to extinguish the fire, followed by a positive pressure ventilation fan to clear the smoke.

"All crews returned to their stations by 11am."

Sarah plans to hold the youth club at an alternative venue tonight (Wednesday, May 2).

It will take place at the pavilion, based at the Fulbourn recreation ground.

For more information email [email protected] or call Sarah on 07984 856597.

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