A TOWN youth group is appealing for donations of money, time and decorating supplies to put the last touches to its refurbished base.

The 1st Ferryhill Scout Group is close to completing a series of upgrades to its hall in the Dean Bank area of Ferryhill which started in July.

So far a new kitchen has been fitted, new toilets including facilities for the disabled have been installed and small meeting rooms created.

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The building has been damp-proofed, drains upgraded and sensor lighting has been donated by Thorns at Spennymoor.

Students from East Durham College will rewire the building as part of their electrical qualifications.

Around £27,000 has been spent on the work which has included neighbourhood budget funding from Durham County Councillor David Farry’s allocation last year, the Four Together Partnership and the Banks Community Foundation.

The gruop is part of the Bishop Auckland district and- with five young leaders, 18 scouts, 12 cubs and 16 beavers- the only one in the area without a waiting list.

The revamped hall will be better suited for regular activities- beavers on Fridays, 5.45pm to 7pm, cubs on Thursdays, 6pm to 7.30pm, and scouts on Tuesdays, 7pm to 9pm - and when it hosts other groups for events such as a welly walk and camping.

“The facilities are much more user friendly now, for scouting and to enable us to hire it out to generate extra income,” said Malcolm Turnbull, group scout leader.

Donald Park, chairman, said: “It will make a big difference for us to be able to hire out our hall whether it be for exercise classes or slimming groups, meetings, parties or other youth activities.”

The group hopes to have the hall, which is a former Zion church bought by the scouts in 1981, ready for an Easter fair then an open day in June to which everyone involved in the work or connected to the group will be invited.

Mr Park said: “We appreciate the help we’ve had already and have made a few grant applications we are waiting for.

“We have just a few things left to do and any offers of time, money or materials such as paint would be welcome.”

To help email 1stferryhill@durhamscouts.org.uk or call 07725672686.