News & Events
For more IP17 community news and information
- Fromus Centre Wellbeing Programme for October
Autumn's here and the Fromus Centre is pleased to announce that it is supporting a number of wellbeing initiatives. Here are the dates for some of the activities coming up in October – Please pop along and have a chat over a cuppa…
Date / Time
Every Monday in the IT Room
One to one sessions (Careers Advice and initial meetings) in the morning and group ( Job Club) sessions in the afternoon
Thursday, Oct. 23rd ,10am – 1pm
in the SMILE Cafe (hall)
Health Watch Suffolk – Outreach Service for Suffolk Coastal community
Talk in confidence to your local representative from your Independent WATCHDOG ‘Healthwatch Suffolk’. Whenever you use a Health or Social Care service whatever kind of experience you have, positive or negative, by sharing that with us anonymously, we are able to ensure that these services listen and put you, the patient, at the heart of what they do. Please pop along and have a chat over a cuppa.
Every Wednesday - 2 sessions, one stating at 5.30pm and one at 7.30pm, in the Fromus Centre hall
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Every Thursday 10am – 2pm, in the Fromus Centre hall
1. SMILE Cafe
2. Therapeutic Gardening
The pop-up SMILE Cafe provides an oasis for respite, with refreshments - primarily for Carers and vulnerable adults, as well as those just in need of some company in a friendly environment.
Feeling a little down and worn out? Come along for some fresh air and make some new friends. Meet every Thursday morning at 10am in the SMILE Cafe and then move to the Fromus Centre community garden.
- The potential for a new purpose-built Fromus Centre - a Comunity Enterprise Centre for Saxmundham and district is getting closer...
SADCIC's original 3-year lease to run the Fromus Centre expires at the end of September and SADCIC are concluding a new short-term lease to continue developing and managing the community space and facilities.
Actioning their joint Memorandum of Understanding, SADCIC and SCC are working towards their aspiration to replace the current building - when the Fromus Centre land is developed for housing, for which there is already planning permission in place.
By 2018, the longer-term plan is to transpose the groups and activities from the current building into a new, purpose-built, two-storey premise with c.600 sq.m. of floorspace, within the current grounds of The Fromus Centre site.
The new Fromus Centre, owned and managed by SADCIC, would include:
- Reception / Office
- A Hot Desking Office
- A Large Hall for general community / indoor sport use eg badminton, basket-ball
- A Community Café / Bar (to seat at least 40)
- A Multi-Media Training / Meeting Room (to hold up to 20)
- A Keep-Fit Room for all ages
- A Lift
- Disabled Toilets
- Storage cupboards
- Parking (c.20 spaces)
- Report on the free Family Fun Afternoon of Saturday July 19th
Despite the threats on thunder storms, the festivities at the Fromus Centre went ahead in hot sunshine and a fantasic day was enjoyed by all who visited, with all the colourful and varied food, drinks and entertainments - both inside and outside the Fromus Centre building. Over 150 people dropped into the Saxmundham Fromus Centre as part of an open afternoon to promote the community hub for Saxmundham.
“It was a truly wonderful afternoon combining summer sunshine with laidback entertainment for young and old. It felt more like attending a large private garden party” said Volunteer SADCIC Director Phil Peeling. “And, in addition, we were pleased to note that the fund-raising activities for PASTEL – a local group supporting those with additional needs – raised £475. “
This music and dance event - sponsored byThe Saxmundham & District Community Interest Company (SADCIC) - was aimed particularly at the young and elderly, but all were welcome. It formed part of the Saxmundham Music Festival produced by the Brook Farm Resident Association (BFRA), with the Big Lottery Fund as their main sponsor.
- Family Fun Afternoon : Saturday, July 19th !
A FREE Family Fun afternoon of relaxation and entertainments is being planned by the local social enterprise,
The Saxmundham & District Community Interest Company (SADCIC) to promote their Fromus Centre
- the community hub for Saxmundham.
The afternoon is planned primarily for young families and older residents but all are welcome.Toilets will be availabe in the Fromus Centre, with a nappy changing facility. There is disabled access into the building, as well as disabled toilets.
General parking will be available at the Saxmundham Free School a hundred yards or so, further up the road. Parking on site will be limited to vehicles for those providing the entertainment and services on the day.
The afternoon festivities will run from 12.30pm until 3.30pm
- both outside and inside the Fromus Centre -
and are particularly aimed at young families and older residents, but all are welcome!
Outside on the Fromus Centre green
SADCIC have booked 3 teams of Morris Dancers
- Pretty Grim Border Morris, Danegeld and the newly-formed Cookhouse Morris -
a traditional Punch & Judy show and a BBQ, run by the Saxmundham & District Rotary Club
There will also be a craft and flower stall,
with proceeds going to support activities for vulnerable adults.
Inside the Fromus Centre
There will be some live music in a licensed pop-up cafe which will be serving
beer, wine, teas and coffee, cakes and ice-cream, as well as filled rolls (bacon, cheese & tuna)
and light lunches (baked potatoes with toppings, pizzas and quiche Lorraine).
Members of the Pretty Grim Border Morris in action
Members of the Danegeld in action
Tannoys for Lost Children
playing in the pop-up cafe
inside the Fromus Centre
Ukulele Ray & Brother Ron
playing in the pop-up cafe
inside the Fromus Centre
Funds raised on the day will go to support the activities of
the local social enterprise, PASTEL Community Interest Company.
This music and dance entertainment will form an integral part of the Sax Music Festival, organised by the Brook Farm Residents Association. with SADCIC as a main sponsor. Other musical events, managed by the Brook Farm Residents Association will take place, on Saxmundham Town Council's Memorial Field, only two minutes walk from the Fromus Centre. Earlier in the day there will be music workshops for the youth of the town but, from 4pm until 10pm, there will be visiting bands culminating in a showcase finale featuring the Beach Boys national UK tribute band.
- Saxmundham 1st Scouts transform the grounds of the Fromus Centre
The Saxmundham & District Community Interest Company (SADCIC), who managed the Fromus Centre, greatly appreciated the fantastic volunteer community work by the 1st Saxmundham Scouts and their parents, They were helping to create an attractive outside garden space for visitors to the Fromus Centre – a community hub for everyone in Saxmundham. They did a truly brilliant job!
In a full day of very mixed weather, they completely transformed the grounds. The final make-over was on a par with professionals, seen on TV, achieving for someone’s back garden!
It’s good the reflect on the fact that 3 generations of local volunteers - including the SADCIC retiree volunteers - have worked together to provide such an excellent community amenity.
Group Chairman Haydn Morris said "Scout Community Week is all about making a positive difference in the local community and I think that by undertaking this garden renovation we have managed to do that. Our Beavers, Cubs, Scouts, Leaders and parents worked extremely hard all day through sun and rain to transform the garden. I'm sure that taking part in this project will help build our children’s confidence by making them feel proud of achieving things for others and also teach them that we all have a role to play in improving the areas in which we live. We were very grateful to receive support from a number of local businesses including Tesco, Waitrose and Peggs in Saxmundham, Wyevale Garden Centre and Notcutts in Woodbridge, and B&Q in Ipswich Europark who all generously donated plants and materials to make the transformation possible. As part of their Scouting programme, our Beavers, Cubs, and Scouts will now be making regular visits to the Fromus Centre grounds to weed the borders and water the plants to help maintain the landscaping in it's current condition"
- The Saxmundham & District Community Interest Company (SADCIC) and Suffolk County Council sign Memorandum of Understanding
Councillor Beccy Hopfensperger with Don Tricker on a visit to the Fromus Centre in Saxmundham to review progress and discuss future plans.
Suffolk’s localities leader has visited a Saxmundham social centre to discuss future plans for the building. Councillor Beccy Hopfensperger from Suffolk County Council visited the Fromus Centre to also review progress. The building was formerly the Saxmundham Community Resource Unit, and was taken over by volunteer directors at Saxmundham and District Community Interest Company (SADCIC) two years ago.
Ms Hopfensperger looks over the council’s “Our Place” programme, which supports local community groups in determining and managing local services for themselves.
Ms Hopfensperger said: “I’m truly impressed with what has taken place with this building, through the concerted efforts of just a handful of dedicated local volunteers. This is a shining example of what can be achieved with the new “Our Place” approach by Suffolk County Council.
As a result, Suffolk County Council has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with SADCIC - as a declaration of intent that we will work closely with them to help realise our joint aspirations for even more exciting developments on this site.”
Don Tricker, SADCIC Chairman said: “SADCIC are now looking to work with Suffolk County Council to develop the whole site, which would include the design and building of a new purpose built Fromus Centre. SADCIC would need to raise the necessary funding for this venture but we appreciate Suffolk County Council’s gesture in signing the MOU to support us with this ambitious vision.”
report and photo, courtesy of Archant
The original article appeared in the East Anglian Daily Times (15/2/14)
- SADCIC completes the Fromus Centre Rebranding & Refurbishment Programme
Here is a summary of these major improvements:
- Created new identity - the Fromus Centre (formerly known as the Saxmundham Resource Centre)
- Established new pricing / booking procedure and Terms & Conditions
- Established new external / building signage
- Changed access / security to building / rooms + cleared out rubbish!
- Selected new service providers – local / cheaper
- Cleared historic blocked drains under building
- Worked with volunteer Alde Valley School student to create Fromus Centre website
- Purchased online booking system (accessed via website)
- Redecorated main hall + 3 meeting rooms + entrance area + corridor
- Laid new sheet vinyl floor in hall
- Installed new wall-mounted TV in hall (for training / electronic games screen)
- Installed new amplifier in hall to connect up all 4 existing speakers
- Installed new disco / drama lighting system in the hall
- Replaced all light units in hall, corridor and reception
- Replaced 3 radiators and installed heating controls on all radiators
- Purchased 12 new folding tables + 2 stacking trolleys + 75 stackable chairs
- Purchased new crockery for large meeting / conference refreshments
- Replaced rotten wood on window surrounds and repainted the front of the building
- Improved external landscaping
- Produced a Fromus Centre leaflet
- Installed of a baby-changing facility.
- Installed a wall-mounted large presentation screen in the hall.
- Repaired the pot-holes in the turning-circle road outside the Fromus Centre.
All the SADCIC directors are local volunteers.
For further information about SADCIC, please click here.
- Financial Support for Local Community Organisations
Saxmundham Town Council plans to make up to £10,000 available this year, in total, to provide grants to local groups and enterprises, in the third sector, that provide added value amenities and services to Saxmundham residents.
To be eligible for any Saxmundham Town Council grant, organisations must:
• Have aims and objectives that are in keeping with those of Saxmundham Town Council.
• Have a recognised constitution, have a clear democratic management structure and have clear financial controls including business bank/Building Society, or Credit Union Account.
• Be legally able to carry out the activities, which should be primarily for the benefit of Saxmundham residents, follow national legislation on employment, health and safety, discrimination and child protection, as appropriate.
• Provide evidence of local consultation with end-users of service
• Must show evidence of collaborative working / partnerships with other local community groups in the delivery of services, where desirable.
• Provide an explanation for what the funding is to be spent on.
Funding will be given:
• To encourage the formation of new community groups leading to the provision of a wider range of services in Saxmundham.
• To assist with the recruitment of new members to existing groups.
• To support existing groups to provide new services, equipment and running costs.
Grants cannot be given:
• To organisations or for activities that support party political aims.
This funding could help you set up a new group / service at the Fromus Centre...
For further information please e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org or Tel: 604595
Community Celebration to promote Learning Disability Week
The Saxmundham enterprises PASTEL and Tru-care joined together to herald and celebrate Learning Disability Week (August 19 to 25). These two local providers of services to people with learning disabilities, and their carers, will be put on an event for all the family on Saturday August 17th, from mid-day until 4pm, at the Fromus Centre. The afternoon provided activities designed to be both fun and educational and took place both inside and outside the building.
Two bands provided live music – Eine Kleine Sax Music (featuring 4 saxophones and a drummer) and the mixed-ability group, Nobody’s Perfect. Outdoors there was a barbeque, ice-cream, dancing and displays, stalls, donkey rides, an animal petting corner and Zorb balls. Indoors there was the SMILE café, a craft activity and a programme of informal talks for Carers, including details of activities in the area for people with learning disabilities, direct payments and their management, and the making of power of attorney, wills and trusts to cater for those with learning disabilities.
This event was also used to launch the Stay Safe scheme in Saxmundham by Leading Lives, supported by PASTEL. The scheme is co-ordinated by the Suffolk Hate Crime Service and created to enable more vulnerable people to feel safer when accessing the community by providing them with places they can access should they need support.
- BFRA Family Quiz Nights
The first of a series of evening family quizes, on Saturday June 29th at 7.30pm, in the Fromus Centre hall. The questions are designed to be of interest to all ages and will feature music from the 50's through to the 00's.Tickets will cost £1 per person for teams of four to six people.All welcome.
The second quiz night will be on Saturday, September 21st - same place, same time.
For more information, Tel: 01728-603860 or e-mail email@example.com.
- SADCIC DELIVERS FOR SAXMUNDHAM
For the past 18 months The Saxmundham & District Community Interest Company (SADCIC) has focussed its efforts on the revitalisation of the newly created Fromus Centre, in Seaman Avenue, Saxmundham. This is a building owned by Suffolk County Council, formerly known as the Saxmundham Resource Centre, and is now leased to and run by SADCIC. This is a leading example of SCC’s “Our Place” initiative. The building was formerly underutilised and in need of an uplift. As the re-branded Fromus Centre, it has been steadily refurbished, new facilities have been added and it is now being used by more and more community groups and local enterprises, for regular activities and meetings.
“Through efficiency savings on running the building, and revenues earned from hiring out the hall and meetings rooms, SADCIC has built up a financial surplus of over £12,000. And, as a social enterprise run entirely by volunteers and no paid directors, all this money is being re-invested into the Fromus Centre” reported Phil Peeling, Volunteer Director, SADCIC “ The hall floor, in particular, was cracking up and has been taken up and completely replaced with new flooring.”
The hall and meeting rooms have been repainted, the hall has had a complete new floor laid, audio-visual facilities are being installed in the hall, new tables and chairs have been delivered, new crockery is on order, key lighting inside and outside of the building is being replaced, the building frontage is being cleaned up, and the grounds are being enhanced with some improved landscaping.
“We have had a steady stream of enquiries to hire the hall and meeting rooms and the number of hirers has grown to over 25. Rooms can be hired from as little as £3 per hour and with all these new facilities we expect to demand to grow still further” added Don Tricker, Volunteer Director, SADCIC.
“The Fromus Centre in Saxmundham has already achieved a great deal and with a concerted effort by all will enhance the social and business amenities of the town to the benefit of local people.” stated County Cllr. Michael Gower. “The Fromus Centre is a beacon project for Suffolk County Council’s “Our Place” initiative, to enable community groups to take on and develop county buildings for the benefit of their local community.”
"What a great achievement - this is 'Our Place' working at it's best." Cllr Rebecca Hopfensperger, Suffolk County Council Cabinet Member for Localities.
"Very impressive!" Tony Osmanski - Strategic Director. Suffolk Coastal District Council.
- BFRA Children's Christmas Party
On Sunday 16th December, Brook Farm Residents Association held their very first Children’s Christmas Party at The Fromus Centre. There were around 40 children with their parents or guardians who saw them become creative with all sorts of craft work including making Christmas biscuits and decorating baubles. Father Christmas turned up with free gifts and even little elves helped out.
The budget of £500 for the day, came from BFRA hard earned money, which was made up from Music Nights and subscriptions from the year.
The BFRA thanked SADCIC for renting the rooms at such a reasonable rate."We shall certainly return for further events in the year." Terry Barrow, Chairman, Brook Farm Residents Association (BFRA)
- SMILE Cafe Launch
The SMILE Cafe opened on Thursday, October 4th and over 100 customers streamed into the SMILE Café in its first 3 hours!
The SMILE Café provides refreshments and respite primarily for Carers and those adults with additional mental needs eg dementia, learning disabilities, mental health problems, strokes and head injuries.
It aims to provide a relaxing oasis in rural East Suffolk for those seeking to gain some respite and the company of similar people for emotional support and the exchange of useful information.
The café is now a pop-up café operating every Thursday between 10am and 2pm at the Fromus Centre, Seaman Avenue, Saxmundham, and is a co-production between the PASTEL Community Interest Company and the Rotary Club of Saxmundham and District.
Further information can be gained from the website www.smile-cafe.org.uk or by telephoning 01728-604944 during office hours.
- The Fromus Centre - The First 12 months
It’s been 12 months since the volunteer directors of The Saxmundham & District Community Interest Company (SADCIC) took over the management of the greatly under-utilised Suffolk County Council’s Saxmundham Community Resource Centre, in Seaman Avenue. Since then the SADCIC social enterprise volunteers have redecorated and refurbished the building, renamed it the Fromus Centre and re-launched it with a successful Fun Day this summer, with over 300 visitors coming to have a look around. Now the building is developing into a more lively community enterprise centre used by various community groups, with activities for all age groups ranging from parent and toddlers to IT workshops for the over 50’s. It is now available for meetings, conferences, celebration events, children parties, fun activities and local clubs and groups. “We want these premises to be seen by local residents, groups and businesses as your place in Saxmundham to relax, meet, chat, learn, exercise, play and have fun!” says volunteer SADCIC director, Don Tricker.
“The creation of the Fromus Centre in Saxmundham is a comprehensive and fine example of a project which will increase the social and business amenities in the town.” says County Cllr. Rae Leighton. “The Fromus Centre is a beacon project for Suffolk County Council’s “Our Place” initiative, to enable community groups to take on and develop county buildings for the benefit of their local community.”
New activities are starting all the time, including various dance classes, and on October 4th there will be the start of the weekly pop-up SMILE Café, aimed at reducing social isolation and providing emotional support for all Carers, as well as adults with additional mental health needs. It will be open every Thursday from 10am to 2pm, starting as a coffee snack bar, and provide a friendly place to relax, unwind and talk to others. Information advice and guidance will be on hand from visiting professionals and public agencies. For more information, please visit www.smile-cafe.org.uk
For more information on the Fromus Centre and booking details, please check this website or call 01728-604944.
- Fun Day at The Fromus Centre!
On Saturday July 7th, a day when other parts of the country were suffering torrential downpours, Saxmundham was bathed in glorious sunshine for the Fromus Centre Fun Day. Over 300 people, both young and old, streamed to the event throughout the day. There were displays, activities and refreshment both indoors and outside on the grassed areas, providing a great carnival atmosphere.
There was something for everyone, ranging from a traditional Punch & Judy show to a modern Pimms bar. There was plenty of ice cream and dancing displays from the PASTEL Morris Team, the Mystic Belly dancers and an audience participation of Zumba dancing. Bouncy castles, big and small, were on hand with games and stalls provided by local community groups and a PA system provided music which added to the community event.
The day was sponsored by The Saxmundham & District Community Interest Company (SADCIC) - to help promote the newly refurbished Fromus Centre and the community groups who currently use it, or about to start. Such was the success that 3 bookings were taken on the day and requests for future events have been requested.
It was a wonderful day and a leading example of Suffolk County Council’s ‘Our Place’ initiative delivering a real local difference – a positive example of the ‘big society’ in action. SADCIC volunteers were delighted by the very positive feedback we received. It was amazing how many people didn't know of the existence of the building or didn't know it was for community use. We are now being encouraged to develop a range of more community supported events throughout the year. The Fromus Centre is a resource for all the community and the Fun Day has been all about making people aware of its existence. It is here for everyone to use, whether for their own events, celebrations or club activities and meetings.
- Fun Day at The Fromus Centre: Saturday July 7th 2012
Come and view the facilities 11.30am-3.30pm. Inside and outside at the Fromus Centre. Free entry: everyone is welcome! Entertainment, Stalls and fun activities for all...
Beer / Wine / Pimms bar /Barbeque / Teas & Coffee / Scones & Cakes / Ice CreaMorris Dancing / Belly Dancing / Zumba Dancing / Punch & Judy / Wooden Crafts / Plants / Bouncy Castles / Books Stocks / Penalty Shoot-Out / Fire Engine / Mobile Police Station...
- TESCO selects Fromus Centre as Forward Base
In planning to open a new store in Saxmundham, TESCO has chosen to use the Fromus Centre to support the front-line project planning. The advance team will base themselves at the Fromus Centre making use of its wide range of facilities to plan for the store fitting out, recruitment of staff and staff training. The store will open on May 21st.
- Fromus Centre Marketing Plan
A Fromus Centre Marketing Plan has been produced, by Megan Lucock, a volunteer Business Studies student of Leiston High School. She has also delivered, as part of her Marketing Plan, an integrated website (you're viewing it now), poster and leaflet to promote the new Fromus Centre in earnest.
- Fromus Centre branding support
Work started on re-inforcing the branding of the new Fromus Centre - starting with repairs to the hall ceiling, followed by re-painting the hall ceiling and re-painting all the hall walls, and integral coffee bar. The external locks and access arrangements have been changed to make them simpler and more secure. New furniture in the form of folding tables and folding chairs have been delivered.