An unused Rotherham building has been rescued and reopened for young people thanks to an overhaul by a variety of partners including Willmott Dixon.

The centre reopened after five years of planning between Rotherham Metropolitan Borough Council Youth Services and a team of Rotherham youngsters who worked to identify requirements of the centre. Located on the ex-library site in Herringthorpe, the centre will provide youngsters with access to a sexual health centre, counselling facilities, training and educational needs as well as a vast multimedia centre.

Marcus Hurcombe, project manager for Rotherham Metropolitan Borough Council Youth Services, explains: “The site was in dire need of attention to transform it – and together we have done a wonderful job. From the outset we were committed to gaining the input of young people from the area as the facility is for their use. The newly refurbished club will be enjoyed by a large number of people from across Rotherham and up to Sheffield, who can gain access to a wide variety of activities and services.”

The project was led by Rotherham Metropolitan Borough Council and 2010 Rotherham. It has relied on the goodwill of a number of partners including the Department for Culture, Media and Sport, Build 4 Growth, the area assemblies and Willmott Dixon, which renovated the kitchen area.

The project started in 2005 when young people throughout the valley were consulted and the idea to create a studio space was formed. The young people from Valley Youth Forum continued to drive forward the project, with the support from youth workers, to successfully bid for a number of funding streams. Funding was granted from the likes of Quids In – Youth Capitol Fund to build a studio in the underground garage and Children In Need, which allowed funding for staff members to support young people to learn music, write lyrics, learn recording skills and play musical instruments. Young people from one of the most deprived areas in Rotherham now have access to a state of the art recording and rehearsal facility on their doorstep.

The Mayor and Consort of Rotherham, Mrs Rose McNeely, was the guest of honour to officially open the centre. Willmott Dixon's Jonathan James was delighted to be involved in the project. He said: “It’s fantastic to see how quickly this project has come together and the feedback from youngsters has been fantastic. We are only too pleased to have been involved and are delighted to leave a lasting legacy in the Rotherham area.”