Member Article

CRAMLINGTON DIGITAL YOUTH PROJECT PROVES SUCCESS

A DIGITAL youth project in Manor Walks Shopping Centre in Cramlington is celebrating overwhelming success after welcoming its 10,000th visitor through its doors within just two months of opening.

Venue, run by social enterprise company Digital Community Youth, opened in the shopping centre in June with the aim of engaging more youngsters in the community with its multi-media suite, virtual gallery, video diary booths, digital graffiti wall and games such as snooker and air hockey.

Its success has led to a significant second floor expansion to accommodate the increase in visitors. The new floor, due to open in the autumn, will incorporate a music entertainment area, a diner, IT training suite, games room, music recording studio and a green-screen video recording studio.

The project has also launched a membership scheme, which for £25 per year entitles members to free entry to the upper floor, discount on games and competitions, 20 percent discount on computer repairs from its I.T support service and discounted hire rates for mobile discos.

Ross Sanderson from Cramlington was the 10,000 visitor on 14 August along with his family. He was presented with a certificate and free membership card.

Digital Community Youth project manager Mick Harland said: “We had high hopes that Venue would be popular with the Cramlington community as there is nothing similar to this in the town, but we never expected it to exceed our expectations as quickly as it has with 10,000 visitors in just two months.

“We have been praised by the local community - parents, councillors, police officers and we even received a letter fromDowning Streetpraising us on our efforts.

“Expanding our services was a natural progression due to the high demand we’ve witnessed. We’re really looking forward to welcoming new and existing visitors to Venue to enjoy the array of new facilities we’ll have on offer once the second floor is complete.”

Manor Walks Shopping Centre general manager Bruno Coppola said: “We have put a lot of investment into the project to ensure it is a success and are pleased to see that people from Cramlington and beyond are utilising Venue as a central hub to meet friends and relax whilst interacting with the facilities available and learning and developing new skills.

“The range of facilities have appealed to people young and old and it has proved to be successful at attracting more footfall into the centre. It is a great example of how there is more to Manor Walks than meets the eye for people who haven’t been before.

“Venue can also be used as an incubator space for fledgling businesses to test trial their ideas to the public. We are continuing to look for business mentors who’d like to be involved in nurturing and advising these budding entrepreneurs.”

For more information contact Venue on: 01670-730298 or Facebook.com/digitalvenue.

Follow Manor Walks on Twitter @manorwalks and Facebook - Manor Walks.

ENDS

Media contact: Gemma Graham, OPR tel: 0191 232 5690

NOTES TO EDITORS:

Manor Walks Shopping Centre is a multi-use 500 000sq ft covered shopping centre with over100 High Streetoutlets and independent boutiques including Sainsbury’s, Boots, New Look and Dorothy Perkins and an adjoining retail park with units including Next, Halfords andArgos. It offers four hours free parking.

This was posted in Bdaily's Members' News section by Bruno Coppola .

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