One step closer to new community hub in Warwick

The team behind a community hub initiative in Warwick are one step closer to achieving their goals.

Earlier this year the initiative, known as Warwick cycle hubs, was launched and it is being spearheaded by Lara Smith who owns the Smithery on Smith Street.

It aims to create a community hub in Smith Street by the Happy Puccia cafe featuring multi-purpose street furniture including cycle parking, seating and signs telling the story of the area.

The team had launched a crowdfunding page to help raise £9,500 to help create the hub and last week they hit the target.

Read more: Traders and cyclists striving to create community hub in street in Warwick
Lara said: “Last weekend was our deadline and we were close but not quite there, luckily we had some last-minute donations from the wonderful traders on Smith Street, that took us over the line and we hit our target.

“We are very proud of what our community has achieved so far, and we want to thank every single person who has believed, supported, taken part and pledged.”

Members of the Warwick cycle hubs team. Photo submitted.

Members of the Warwick cycle hubs team. Photo submitted.

Dave Saul from Warwick Amateur Cycling Club (WACC), said: “The prospect of the hub has been exciting from its inception. Now after much effort by the hub team, we’re there, we are now at the point that we can begin to realise the ideas.

“Street art, announcing Smith Street with its diverse traders, secure cycle parking, seating, a possible site for an AED (automated external defibrillator) – all of these dreams will become a reality from the hub. WACC and the hub group want this to become a point of reference that other small teams around our town can plan, fund and install their own hub working in collaboration to develop Warwick as a cycle-friendly town.”

Soon the team will be launching a design competition for the hub. Lara said: “We’ll shortly be releasing a design competition for the entire community to get involved in determining how our first Cycle Hub will take shape.

“If you’re not the best at drawing up your design ideas, don’t worry we’ll also be running surveys on social media so that everyone can have their say, on what will be best design for the community and visitors alike.

“Kids can also get involved at Happy Puccia by drawing what they’d like to see, with a prize for the best ideas which we’ll try to incorporate into the final design, as we want them to use the hub too.

Read more: Campaign launched to help Smith Street in Warwick thrive
“We would also like to hear from local design companies and manufacturers, that can offer their time or services to help us deliver the project.

“We hope to share how the project is taking shape at our annual Party on Smith Street on July 27.”

The last part of the Warwick cycle hubs initiative will be trying to integrate a defibrillator into the site of the hub.

Nearly £2,000 has so far been raised, but more money is now needed to help cover the cost of installation and insurance.

Maria Denley from Golden Monkey Tea is running a half- marathon to help with the fundraising and Lara Smith from the Warwick cycle hubs initiative is due to meet with Warwick Town Council on Thursday to see if it can help with the project.

If anyone would like to make a pledge click here