Reprieve for youth bar as cash arrives

Leger boost: Labour leader Ed Miliband joins youngsters to try out Shakers' snooker table.            ''                Picture: Steve Taylor
Leger boost: Labour leader Ed Miliband joins youngsters to try out Shakers' snooker table. '' Picture: Steve Taylor
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TEENAGERS are celebrating after a youth cafe was given a stay of execution thanks to a donation from a housing organisation.

Bosses at the Shakers Bar, on Askern High Street, warned they could have to close if they could not raise cash to keep the cafe going after it had a £500,000 bid for lottery cash turned down.

The cash would have secured its long term future.

But Shakers was given a boost to keep it operating for the immediate future when it was awarded £6,300 from the St Leger Homes’ Estate Improvement Fund.

It means it can keep going for now and Doncaster MP Ed Miliband was invited the centre to perform an official opening of the centre.

The £6,300 will go towards the running costs for the year.

A spokesman for St Leger Homes said the aims of The Shakers tied in with tackling anti-social behaviour as the building attracts between 80 and 100 young people each night.

Frank Protheroe, chairman of St Leger Homes’ Estate Improvement Fund, said: “We decided to give The Shakers £6,300 because it is such a good project.

“It provides somewhere for the young people to go, stops their boredom, and keeps them active.”

Doncaster North MP Mr Miliband said he was proud to be able to cut the ribbon at Shakers.

The complex has a juice bar, televisions, games consoles, a 1950s-style jukebox and activities for 11- to 18-year-olds, such as cookery classes and DJ sessions.

Mr Miliband said: “I’m proud to have been asked to officially open Shakers.

“It is a fantastic resource, not just for young people, but for the whole of Askern.”

The facility, described as a bar with no alcohol, is the only one of its kind in Doncaster, and was originally set up by the Coalfields Regeneration Trust.

Each year £80,000 is up for grabs from St Leger Homes Estate Improvement Fund to be used across the borough.

This year’s money is for projects which will have an ongoing impact in helping to tackle the causes of anti-social behaviour.

Applications for the funding are considered by a panel of tenants and St Leger Homes’ staff.

Other successful projects will be notified in the next couple of weeks.