St Albans community hub petition reaches nearly 1000 signatures

Cottonmill Lane, St Albans.

Cottonmill Lane, St Albans. - Credit: Archant

Nearly 1,000 people have signed a petition urging the council to provide them with a community space.

Members of the Cottonmill and Sopwell Hub (CASH) campaign say residents living in the area have nowhere to get together - there is no library, cafe, or social club.

The petition asks St Albans district council (SADC) to partner with CASH and create an inclusive hub.

CASH campaigner Michelle Mackenzie said: “The council recently demolished the King Offa, our community pub, we’ve lost two newsagents shops and our mobile library service has been cut.

“Unlike most other areas of St Albans, Sopwell has no dedicated community centre, library, café or social club and we are determined to get what we were promised [in the now-failed draft Strategic Local Plan].”

Before the King Offa was flattened to make way for affordable housing, a team of neighbours set up a community group in the unused building to prove such an initiative is in demand.

In 2015, when the demolition was announced, a local resident said it was like “tearing the heart out of the local community”.

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CASH campaigner Janet Charles said: “There is so much excitement about this and local people have been really positive about the idea.

“So far we’ve had over 50 suggestions for what people would like to use the new community hub for.”

These ideas include a café, activities for disabled people, a youth club, table tennis facilities, five-a-side football teams, a rentable small business meeting space, a repair shed and a scrapstore.

CASH have collected the majority of signatures on paper while canvassing and the next signing event is at Vesta Avenue shops on June 9.

The group hope to present the petition to SADC in July.

A social club in Cottonmill, the Marlborough Club, was closed in 1994 after a fire - just a year after Radiohead performed in the space.

For more information about the campaign, email

To sign the petition, before it closes on June 22, visit