Happy New Year Pontyclun
Café 50 is a café run by Pontyclun Community Council as a social centre for older people. It offers affordable and freshly cooked midday meals and has a continuous programme of social activities to serve every interest.
Over Christmas, Café 50 had a much needed re-paint. It now looks as fresh and as inviting as when it was first opened in 1995. The repainting was undertaken by the Probation Service who provided people fulfilling Community Safety Orders. My thanks to them and to Julius Roszkowski, the Council’s Chief Officer for organising the partnership with the Probation Service. Several community councillors volunteered their time over Christmas to get the Café ready for its re-opening.
The range of activities at Café 50 includes
· A Weekly Quiz organised by Cllr Gwyn Jackson
· A monthly Film Club organised by Cllr Mike Davies
· A weekly social group for families living with Dementia organised by Sabrina Cartlidge with Cllr Margaret Griffiths, Cllr Ann Jackson and other volunteers
· A weekly Craft Group – Welcome Friends
· Mature Movers
· Armchair Yoga
· Indoor Curling
· Cantorion Pontyclun
· Macmillan Support Group
Café 50 is by organised by Tara Davies who works part time for the Community Council in a post part funded by RCT Council.
If you are interested in have lunch at Café 50 or joining any of the groups, you can contact Tara 01443 238500 or e-mail email@example.com
Back in 2015 when we were first developing Café 50 we wrote about the University of the Third Age in the Diary inviting local people to meet and form a group – the rest is history! Pontyclun U3A is now at the centre of Pontyclun life. Anyone not in full time employment can enjoy any of its sociable learning groups which include:
· Play reading
· Music appreciation
· Book reading
· Bird Watching
Most of these groups meet at Café 50. You can learn more about these groups through this website https://www.pontyclun.net/u3a. Or you can ring the Café 50 Coordinator, Tara Davies on 01443 238500.
History of Café 50
I believe that Pontyclun Community Council is the only Community Council in Wales to run a social and dining facility like Café 50. How did this happen?
It was back in 2014 that RCT Council announced its intention to close half of all its libraries and day centres across the county borough. The UK Government had already set out on its programme of deep austerity. The global banking system had teetered on the edge of collapse in 2008 due the banks’ reckless and unregulated lending policies. Governments across the Globe intervened to bail out the banks and the UK Government, after 2010, was determined to cover the cost through savage cuts in public services – even though the banks had a programme of repayment. RCT Council set out to protect its schools and its social services but all other budgets were cut by 50%. The end result was that either Pontyclun Library or Pontyclun Day Centre had to go.
Pontyclun Community Council, with RCT Cllrs Margaret and Paul Griffiths, intervened with a plan to run the Day Centre, renamed Café 50. We saved the Day Centre and transformed the contribution that it makes to the town of Pontyclun.
Pontyclun Community Venues
We are very fortunate to have a range of venues which serve the interests of our very active community. They include the Community Centre, the Rugby Club, Bethel Baptist Church, St Paul’s Church.
Pontyclun Athletic Club has a special place which is not well understood. It is in a very real sense owned by the people of Pontyclun having been gifted to trustees by Godfrey Clark in 1910. The trustees are charged with running the club in the interests of the people of Pontyclun.
Maintaining these venues is a challenge for all the volunteers involved. The Community Council seeks to work with all such volunteers so that we can support each other and coordinate our efforts. If there is space available we can be sharing that information and inform groups who are looking for such space.
Community Council Budget
The Community Council at its meeting on 8 January 2020 agreed its budget for the coming financial year. The Council plans to spend £122.100 in the coming year – 2.7% more than this year which largely reflects increases in staff costs. This budget will result in the average Pontyclun household being charged £34.79 towards the Council’s costs.
The Community Council budget will cover the costs of Café 50, the town centre car park, Pontyclun Park, Ivor Woods, summer flowers and Christmas lights, maintenance of public footpaths, the Christmas Festival, Picnic in the Park.
The Community Council receives no money from the Welsh Government. All its community councillors are volunteers who choose not to receive any payments.