A former nightclub in Banbury town centre has been bought by a charity which plans to turn it into a multi-functional hub for people with learning disabilities.
Le Royale in Banbury’s Butchers Row has been bought by charity Style Acre with the aim of giving about 60-80 adults with mild to moderate learning disabilities the opportunity to learn new skills and find volunteering and employment opportunities.
The three-storey property has been empty for some time.
Following a refurbishment programme it will house four supported living flats, a café and a second-hand book and craft shop. The hub will also provide a variety of training, leisure and adult education opportunities such as CV writing.
Banbury MP Sir Tony Baldry, who is an advocate of the project, said: “The service about to be developed in Banbury will provide work experience, a social hub and supported living for vulnerable adults with learning disabilities who are currently unsupported and, as a result, may be leading isolated lives.
“We have seen its model work in Didcot and I welcome its presence and community involvement in Banbury. Style Acre demonstrates a person-centred, positive approach for people with a wide range of learning disabilities, helping them to achieve more than they thought possible.”
Philippa Stannard, fundraising, marketing and community development manager at Style Acre, said: “Adults with milder learning disabilities, such as high functioning autism, very often do not meet local authority criteria support – leaving many unable to fill their days with meaningful activities. The Banbury Support Hub will be life-changing.”
Style Acre bought the property from B & P Properties who had previous plans to create flats and a shop, which did not materialise. Work is to begin later this month with the aim of it opening in September.