RESIDENTS have been told they have councillors' support in their fight to get a new community centre to replace one that burnt down last year.

A plea by people living in the Cloverhill area of Nelson for a new centre was backed by Pendle Council's Nelson area committee yesterday.

But, as usual, the biggest stumbling block to making the dream become a reality is cash, or a lack of it.

The committee was told it would cost £75,000 to build a centre similar in size to the one that was destroyed by fire and even more for a larger, more practical building.

Cloverhill Residents Action Group (CRAG), which represents local people, has pledged to raise money towards the cost and a number of fund-raising ideas are in the pipeline including a "buy a brick" scheme where people can donate cash on a brick-by-brick basis.

Councillor Azhar Ali said: "There's no doubt the people of Cloverhill need a community centre.

"We have to get on and come up with some kind of project to support the residents and come up with some sort of community centre."

But he warned against making a quick decision and ending up with "a tin pot, half-cocked" scheme.

"You need a proper comprehensive community centre," he argued.

A meeting is to be held between councillors and residents' representatives to discuss the issue before the beginning of the new financial year in April when the area committee will have a better idea of its finances.

Converted for the new archive on 14 July 2000. Some images and formatting may have been lost in the conversion.