Praise for Hucknall's Hope Lea charity as it enters its 36th year

Coun John Wilmott and Hope Lea organiser Jan Lees with some of the service-users at the Watnall Road centre.
Coun John Wilmott and Hope Lea organiser Jan Lees with some of the service-users at the Watnall Road centre.

Praise has been lavished on one of Hucknall’s most caring charities as it entered its 36th year of looking after vulnerable people.

The Hope Lea Project was set up by parents and carers back in 1984 when there was nothing in the town to support adults with learning disabilities.

Now it is still going strong, as Hucknall councillor John Wilmott found out when he paid a special visit to the charity’s headquarters on Watnall Road, where it provides day services.

“The people who go to Hope Lea receive high-quality support and care through a professionally managed service,” said Coun Wilmott.

“When I spoke to users of the service, they said it was nice to have so many friends, and they enjoyed the activities that were provided at the centre.

“I spent a lovely day there. It made me feel proud that we have such a facility in Hucknall.”

The aim of Hope Lea is to improve the quality of life of adults with learning disabilities who either live in Hucknall or originate from the town. To ensure they feel valued and have access to their local community.

The Watnall Road centre enables them to socialise with others and enjoy activities that range from gardening and woodwork to baking and bowling and arts and crafts. Staff also take them on visits into the town centre and other places.

Organiser Jan Lees showed Coun Wilmott around the building, which is owned by Ashfield District Council but let at a peppercorn rent.

He learned that the centre’s last audit by Nottinghamshire County Council gave it a rating of 97 per cent, which equated to ‘outstanding’.

A Care Quality Commission inspection in 2018 found Hope Lea to be ‘good’ in all areas.

Coun Wilmott added: “People visiting the day centre can expect to be in a safe and happy environment, with a varied timetable of activities that cater for all tastes.

“The centre promotes independence, where possible, as well as equipping service-users with opportunities to learn life skills.

“I spoke to some families who have relatives there, and they told me they have peace of mind, knowing that Hope Lea is a great place to be and is safe for their loved ones.”