Wednesday 19 July saw the new Underhill Hub open its doors to the community for the first time, with a core of Mumbles Community Association Trustees and some of the new Go Underhill volunteers on hand to make people welcome and explain what is now on offer.
Things got off to a great start, with a steady flow of customers trying out the new Hub café and the Hatch service which can be used by those enjoying the outside seating, all helped by a generous dose of July sunshine after a rainy start.
“Brilliant venue, staff friendly and a great vibe.”
“Great loos and lovely toys for children”
“Fantastic venue for the community.”
“Absolutely fabulous!! Well done to all the team for such an amazing achievement.”
Underhill Development Manager, Douglas Johnson, who is responsible for the operation of the whole site, said:
“It’s great to be finally welcoming people into the Hub and we are grateful for the amazing feedback we have received.
“As you would expect with a completely new operation and a new team of staff, not everything went as smoothly as we would like, but that’s to be expected. We’re learning with every opportunity to serve people and with every bit of feedback we get. By hearing what people think we will be able to ensure that the Hub offers what our community want.”
Open Wednesday through to Sunday as a café, on Mondays and Tuesdays the space is being kept available so that activities which are open to the community can be offered, with a programme to be developed over the coming weeks and months.
The Hub café sits at the centre of the development which, in addition, comprises six new changing rooms, an additional changing room in the refurbished Pavilion, a wheelchair accessible changing room, a dedicated referees’ changing room and a physio room, as well as storage space for equipment used by Mumbles Rangers Football Club and Mumbles Rugby Club.
The public opening follows a series of briefing events and tours which were held for sports club users, and ‘soft opening’ sessions for those organisations, businesses and individuals which have generously given grants, donations or in-kind support for the construction, fitout or set up of the operation.
Simon Tse, Chair of Mumbles Community Association, the charity which has turned the dreams for Underhill Park into a reality, said:
“We are thrilled to finally open the doors to the new Underhill Hub.
“The building and fitout work has taken 18 months to complete, but it has taken much, much longer than that to turn the dreams of new, fit for purpose changing rooms for Underhill Park’s sports users into what we now have available.
“The new facilities offer so much more than was originally dreamed of, and we now have a Hub which our local sports clubs and the wider community can use and enjoy.
“With all the support we have received and the approach of listening to our customers and users so we can try to deliver what they want, Go Underhill truly is ‘By the community; for everyone.’”