Belper’s Drop Inn youth centre has officially opened its new Jam Jar Music Studio - just over three months after it was hit by an arson attack.
As reported in the Belper News, organisers at the Derwent Street centre were devastated when a fire broke out the day before work was to start in December.
However, after local businesses, young people and volunteers banded together the ribbon was cut on the studio in a ceremony attended by local dignitaries.
Drop Inn founder Andrea Fox said: “It is the best turn out we have ever had for an event of this type, the whole team were so happy at the support and the positive comments.”
Work started in early January as soon as the clearing up from the fire was complete, with local firms Amber Valley Fencing and Timber, Mel Evans Electrician and Ben Sanders Flooring – working weekends to ensure the centre opened before Easter.
Andrea continued: “Without the support and commitment of these local businesses and volunteers we would not have opened for another month – it’s fantastic.
“Volunteers did the painting and equipment sorting, while Tom Stone designed and printed the light boxes and signage.
The room was designed by Tom Reed and Tom Stone who are both very creative. They had a free hand with the design – and had to keep the work and equipment within the budget of £5,000 which the Drop Inn landed last year after voting support from the public under the Lloyds Community Banking Olympic legacy fund.”
More than 80 guests called in at the centre for the opening, which is helping promote music as a positive diversion, and grow musicians for the future. The official launch was marked by the cutting of a red ribbon by Belper’s MP Pauline Latham and Helen Collins, the manager of Lloyds Banking Group Community Fund who travelledup from London to see the finished product.
Tom Reed, aged 18, is taking on the responsibility of managing the space and taking bookings, while Steven Mitchel, also 18, will take the lead on DJ workshops.