South Yorkshire Times February 12,1966
Struggling To Keep A Youth Club Open.
Fighting to save their youth club from closing, officials at the Conisbrough Ellershaw Youth and Community Centre are planning an appeal for help to the Council.
The club can play a valuable part in keeping youngsters off the streets, management committee secretary Mr. J. H. Younge, told the ‘South Yorkshire Times’ this week, but more support is vital.
Mr. Younge said, ‘There must be at least 750 children on our estate for whom the club can cater. We could give them plenty of interests. Support has improved has improved a bit since publicity in your paper some weeks ago – but we need more.
‘We are coming to the stage where we must apply for help and I am hoping to get a deputation from our club to meet Conisbrough Urban Council. We asked for Council’s help during our first three years, but that was turned down.’
The centre is also hoping to be granted some rating relief on its annual payment of over £26. Said Mr. Younge, ‘This is the kind of thing that is pulling out of our funds before we have raised them.’
The work of the club committee is entirely voluntary and each member puts in about 24 hours a week claims Mr. Younge.
Despite the difficulties, the club intends to go ahead with its annual treats – on Monday at 5 p.m. for eight-year-olds and under, and on Tuesday at the same time for the nine to twelve-year-olds. Plans are also going ahead for a teenager’s dance.
Mr. Younge also submitted the following open latter addressed to Ellershaw residents on behalf of the committee: We wish to make it clear that no-one on the Ellershaw Youth Committee knew of the letter which appeared under the heading ‘Support Needed’ in your issue of Friday, January 21st. We do not receive any grants or help from any organisation whatsoever, and we are a self-supporting club. Therefore we have to rely on local support and this we are getting from a small minority.’
The letter describes the club’s sources of income, mainly drawn from weekly competitions each Sunday afternoon, and Tuesday and Friday evenings.
On the value of the club to the estate, the letter concludes, ‘First and foremost it helps in keeping children off the streets and so taking worries off the parents’ minds. We do our best to keep the children occupied by, for example: slides, roundabout, darts, tennis, draughts, football, dances, musical plays, boxing.
‘We say if you have lost interest in the club then revive it and so help your own and others. Ellershaw could have the finest community centre in South Yorkshire if only you helped. May we take this opportunity of asking anyone who is willing to give us two to three hours weekly and so relieve the heavy burden which has been our shadow for a few years now.’ Signed, J. H. Younge, W. Thomas, E. Haythorne, A Stockwell, J. Whalley.