Sudbury: Mencap Society to close after 47 years

SADNESS at the announcement that Sudbury Mencap Society is to close after 47 years has been offset by a sizeable cash donation to four local charities.

The society has been supporting people with learning disabilities since 1965, but having failed to gain any new members for its committee, it will be forced to cease operating at the end of its current financial year in September.

But this week the organisation presented cheques totalling �34,000 to worthy local causes, including purchasing a special car seat for 15-month-old Zachary Pryke of Lavenham, who has multiple heath problems and requires frequent trips to hospital.

Speaking at a presentation at Sudbury Town Hall on Thursday, the group’s chairman, Valerie Goodchild said: “For those of us who have worked over the years with Sudbury Mencap Society, it is in many ways very sad that we’ve felt unable to continue supporting local people with learning disabilities.

“However, today’s presentations are something of a silver lining to the cloud cast by our decision to close down our local group.

“We have put a lot of thought into how best to distribute our financial assets to ensure that they will continue to benefit those vulnerable adults and children who we have always tried to support.”

Helping Hands, Friends of Sudbury Resource Centre, received a grant of �10,000 towards a covered canopy, which will enable them to create a continental-style caf� at the centre.

Most Read

They were also given another �1,780 for the purchase of a big marquee, PA system and CD player to help them expand their external fundraising activities.

Sudbury’s Bridge Project received �9,099 for two new commercial ovens and extraction systems for its Courtyard Caf� and training kitchens.

Two local clubs – Sudbury Gateway social club for learning disabled, and Sudbury’s Avocet Swimming and Social Club – which both previously received funding from Mencap, also gained �5,259 and �6,648 respectively.

Mrs Goodchild said: “By giving grants to help continue these two clubs for several more years, we hope that this will buy them time to put in place other funding streams and new fundraising activities to make up their annual income shortfalls.”

Become a Supporter

This newspaper has been a central part of community life for many years. Our industry faces testing times, which is why we're asking for your support. Every contribution will help us continue to produce local journalism that makes a measurable difference to our community.

Become a Supporter