Built in 1883, Oatlands Methodist Church was situated on the corner of Mount Street and Gladstone Street. The church served the ever-growing resident population of the Oatlands community.
In 1968, Oatlands Pre-school began renting the rooms at the rear of the church hall providing a playgroup for children aged 2½ to 4 years. The Methodist churchgoers held their last ever service on 16th July 2006, the congregation were moving on to newer built, more modern churches and so the Oatlands Church premises were deconsecrated. Two years later in 2008, the church was put up for sale.
Oatlands Pre-school were determined to try and buy the premises, not only to protect and secure the future of the well-established, Ofsted registered Pre-school for generations to come, but also to rejuvenate the building, breathing new life into it by restoring it as a community hub and user-friendly meeting place at the heart of the Oatlands community.
After much negotiation, some extraordinary fundraising efforts and a loan from the Charity Bank, enough money was raised for a bid to be submitted for the purchase of the premises. In January 2011, the dream of buying the building became a reality when the governing committee successfully negotiated the freehold purchase of the site. The building came under new ownership – it was to be the start of a whole new era for the iconic old building.
Run by the community, for the community, Oatlands Community Centre presently operates under the umbrella of Oatlands Pre-school and, since it was first established in 2011, it has been run by volunteers. Work was commissioned to improve the hall adding new toilet facilities, including the provision of disabled toilets, a new kitchen, a new floor, disabled access and damp proofing. Longer-term plans include a separate toilet block for the Pre-school, a new entrance for the community centre users using the Gladstone Street entrance and new fencing for the Mount Street children’s play area.
Hiring the Community Centre
The Community Centre is fully accessible and insured and, as well as being set right in the heart of Oatlands, it is also located very close to local transport links. The Community Centre is open to both individuals, clubs and organisations as a venue for hire. The venue offers a main hall, kitchen facilities with crockery/cutlery, tables and chairs. Bookings can be made online via the website
A number of groups run activities from the Community Centre which includes a group of former Methodist churchgoers who run a monthly coffee morning, ‘Little Oats’ toddler group who meet every Wednesday morning during term-time, ;Rhythm Camp Out of School Club’ which runs during the school holidays and ‘Weight Watchers’. For contact information for each group, visit our Facebook page. The venue can also be hired for parties, social gatherings and celebratory events.
The Community Centre is run by volunteers from our community, therefore if you have any suggestions for activities/classes we could run, or if you would like to get more involved, we would love to hear from you. In addition, any offer of skills/time/expertise to help us is always warmly welcomed.