A representative for two sports clubs, which will no longer be homeless after the council agreed to set aside £250,000 for restoration works on a building, claimed the council has not set aside enough money for the project.
Nick Chandler, who represents Penarth gymnastics and amateur boxing club, does not think enough money has been set aside to make St Paul’s church, Arcot Street fit for public use.
He said: “My opinion has always been that £300,000 is the figure needed to get the building back in to full and proper use for both clubs.
“We will undoubtedly fall short with only £250,000, but beggars cannot be choosers.”
The Vale of Glamorgan Council agreed to the funding, which will come from its 2012/2013 Capital Programme, at a cabinet meeting last week. A report put before the cabinet estimated the cost of the work to be around £220,000.
The restoration of St Paul’s church will mean Penarth gymnastics club and amateur boxing club will be able to use the church, which has been closed since February last year because of health and safety concerns.
Former Olympian, Gwynedd Lingard, 77, has run the gymnastics club for more than 50 years and still coaches at the 200 member-strong club, which includes a children’s and adults’ section, as well as catering for those with learning difficulties. In the last 16 years, the gymnastics club has produced six winners at the world championships for people with learning difficulties.
The club was originally housed at Stanwell school, then moved briefly to a church hall in the town, before spending 17 years at the Penarth Pier Pavilion.
Mrs Lingard said: “It has taken a long time to get to this point, but we are thrilled to bits. The council have given us money that’s sufficient to make the building safe, secure and dry, but unfortunately we will need more funds to make the building fit for our use.
“We are delighted but there are still some details to iron out.”
Mrs Lingard has been using a unit on Barry industrial estate, at a cost of around £20,000 a year, since leaving the pavilion in September to allow for renovation work to start to restore the pavilion building to its former glory.
The boxing club had to move from the authority-owned church when it was closed last year.
Vale of Glamorgan Leader, Councillor Gordon Kemp, said: “The Vale Council are proud to allocate the necessary funds to redevelop St Paul’s Church, and re-establish the facility for the local community. This facility will provide a secure future for both the gymnastics and boxing clubs, and provide a welcome recreational facility for young people in the Vale.”
Penarth town mayor, Anthony Ernest, said: “The building is in a shambolic state, which is why we had to close it in the first place. Once the £250,000 works have been carried out, we will then be negotiating with the clubs as to whether they wish to use the site and on what terms.”