THE Wichelstowe community has celebrated the official opening of a building for the community.

Swindon mayor David Wren cut the ribbon on the Stowe Away, a community portable building on the new south Swindon development, on Friday.

The building was put in to give people in Wichelstowe somewhere to go for worship, but also acts as a place for the community including youth meetings and mums and toddlers groups.

Canon Michael Johnson, vicar of Wroughton Church, who helped bring the facility about, said: “We wanted to do something in order to make Wichelstowe the best possible community it could be.”

The building was brought about by Swindon Churches Together, the umbrella body for Swindon churches of several different denominations.

Members began talking about the best way to serve the community of Wichelstowe four years ago.

After a grant of just under £10,000 from Swindon council, it was installed last October.

Canon Johnson added: “There isn’t anything else there so it was vitally important that it was there and it has been well received.

“It’s a place to meet – people have a tendency to see what the church is doing and assume it’s about prayer and worship, that’s part of it, but our central aim was to enable a good community to be built in Wichelstowe.”

It is hoped that when a school is built in the area, this will take on some of the groups.