CAMPAIGNING residents have welcomed the green light given to their new community hall in Dumbarton.

The new Westbridgend Community Hall will replace a former structure demolished in 2017 when it became unsafe.

Built on land between Clyde Court, Lomond Court and Leven Court, it will include a cafe, after school and evening care and activities for any age, available all year round.

Plans also aim for lunch clubs, classes for arts and fitness and sessions to suit residents with disabilities.

The Westbridgend Community Hall Development Association (WCHDA) will run the site as part of a community asset transfer agreed with West Dunbartonshire Council.

Plans were approved by council bosses last month, but only revealed to the association and public last week.

The 24 metre by 20 metre building would feature huge windows looking on to the River Leven and a larger multi-purpose hall, as well as doors to open to an outdoor seating area.

Residents of the two blocks of high flats would be able to use the facilities, and there would be two parking bays marked for disabled badge holders, and also eight bike hoops for cyclists.

Work is expected to begin early in 2022.

The trustees for the WCHDA told the Reporter: “We are delighted to announce that planning permission has been granted for the construction of a new community hall at Westbridgend.

“This project was undertaken by volunteers in 2017 and despite numerous problems and delays, including being on hold due to Covid-19, we are pleased to have reached this milestone.

“We have been advised by the WDC architect that our next step is in applying for a building warrant, which could take us up to the end of August and it is our expectation that building work should commence early next year in 2022.

“The initial investment ringfenced by WDC was £675,000. However, this has escalated considerably due to flooding issues and structural damage to the foundations on the site.

"Also, there are increasing costs and delays in supplies of building materials resulting in additional funds being required and this has yet to be approved by WDC.

“The trustees will continue to work hard towards this venture in providing a new community hall for Dumbarton.”