WACE Chester are a new group aiming to set up a community hub in Saltney Ferry. Director Darren Ankers says that the idea is to ” try and create spaces that encourage development of communitites. provide resources and try and empower people to make new ideas flourish” as well as reduce anxiety and loneliness. The group are working on redeveloping a derelict church building and are also appealing for votes on this years AVIVA community fund.
“We want to create a set of services including a library, shop and cafe- activites and space for people to run their own clubs- gardening , craft art music. ” a lot of people just want the space where they feel they can get involved and feel valued as if they have impact on other people around them” says Darren. The name “WACE” comes from a combination of “finding your way” and “place” with an emphasis on encouraging people to work together and make a difference in society.
Darren Ankers and Philip Beare, WACE directors, and the Church being developed
Speaking about his hopes for WACE, director Philip Beare said that “The best description is we’re building a vessel and we want the community to fill it with whatever they need . If we’re successful with this community it will transform that part of Saltney Ferry. We would love to spread to parts of Chester as soon as we have proved this concept. For us, its building an understanding about what’s going on.”
WACE have already made impressive links with the community including ties to Flintshire local voluntary council , Mavis Crofts MBE, Cllr Richard Lloyd and others. “We have started communicating with groups in the community and finding out their needs and interests. The space itself is finite but we are aiming to produce something flexible enough to match a whole series of ideas. Its a multi issue space with an expression of a lot of avenues. ”
After establishing the board last December, WACE have an agreement on a lease and are now working on fundraising with the project hopefully being up and running in the next year. The group are fundraising via https://springboard-chester.org.uk/ and also submitting a funding bid to a private enterprise company in Cardiff. You can also vote for WACE in this years Aviva fund:
For more information about WACE, including how to get involved or give feedback visit