DEVELOPER Taylor Wimpey sponsored a photography competition to celebrate the official opening of a new community centre in Wichelstowe last week.

The new StoweAway community centre is situated in the heart of East Wichel village, the first phase of a series of villages being built by Taylor Wimpey in Swindon’s Front Garden.

Residents were invited to submit their favourite photos depicting life in East Wichel and the winners were announced at the grand opening of the community centre on Saturday, November 16.

The first prize, a high street shopping voucher, a photo frame and a photo album, was snapped up by Richard Long, while two runners-up received a photo frame and an album. His photo of the setting sun reflected across the water won the judge’s heart.

The winning photographs, judged by Taylor Wimpey sales executive Celia Binfield, will be published in the village newsletter.

Suzanna Miles, trustee of the StoweAway community centre, said: “The community centre first opened in September and the groups who have already been using it absolutely love it.

“For the last three years we have been working out of a little cabin but it’s too small and for our big events we have had to hold them outside, sometimes in all weathers. To have this new community centre which we can all use is fantastic.”

Old Town & East Wichel councillor, Nadine Watts, said: “It’s fantastic that after five years of residents moving to East Wichel to live, they have now got a community centre they can call their own. East Wichel Community Centre will now become the hub of the local community and will give residents and local social groups a place to come together and a space of their own.”

Darren McCormack, regional sales and marketing director for Taylor Wimpey, said: “We are delighted to be lending our support to the community centre trustees on this special occasion. The community centre is a much-needed local facility and will really help to bring this growing community together.”

Other attractions at the community centre opening event included a competition to name the three meeting rooms, an art exhibition, a raffle, a teddy tombola and a cake stall.

There is a range of homes currently available to buy at Wichelstowe, including two-bedroom properties priced from just £139,000, three-bedroom homes from as little as £200,000 and four-bedroom houses from only £240,000.

The development will eventually comprise 4,500 homes plus schools, community facilities, shops and even a 4.5km extension to the Wiltshire and Berkshire Canal.

To find out more about the new homes available at Wichelstowe, house-hunters can visit the Sales Information Centre, located off Croft Road and open daily from 10am to 5pm (Mondays 1pm to 5pm) or call 01793 680433.