A Westhill-based charity has welcomed Garioch Area Committee's decision to approve the transfer of the Westhill Old School and Schoolhouse to them following a rigorous two-year consultation process.
The buildings, which were considered surplus to the Council’s requirements and could have been lost to the community, will now be saved, upgraded and extended to create a first class asset for the benefit of the disabled, their families and the people of Westhill and Aberdeenshire by SensationALL.
In addition to enabling the expansion of the charity’s therapeutic activities and specialist support for individuals with multiple support needs, the facility will have a state of the art sensory room, indoor and outdoor play areas, meeting rooms and self-catering facilities, all of which will be available to community groups.
The provision of an Out of School club for primary school children, before and after school hours, is a key element of the charity’s plans.
Following the decision, Susan Strachan, Co-Founder of SensationALL, said: “We are absolutely over the moon to have been successful in our application for this historic town landmark.
"In addition to providing a long-term home for our service users and their families, we have a tremendous opportunity to work with local groups to provide much needed facilities to the Westhill area.
"Our aim is to create a shared, inclusive community facility which the whole of the North East can be proud of.”
“SensationALL is one of the few charities in the area that provides needs-led support, specialist advice, training and related services to children and adults who have multiple support needs and also, very importantly, provides support to their families.”
Charity chairman, Bob McCracken,added: “On behalf of SensationALL, I would like to thank the Councillors and Officers of Aberdeenshire Council for their support and encouragement throughout this process.
"We could not have reached this truly momentous point in the journey of SensationALL without their assistance and understanding.
"We still have much work to do to achieve our vision which will only be possible with the help and involvement of local people and the support of local businesses”.