Fundraising gig will help keep community hub open

PIT POP: Eight-piece Hetton band Dennis, are playing a gig to raise funds for Elcap.
PIT POP: Eight-piece Hetton band Dennis, are playing a gig to raise funds for Elcap.
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A BAND will be banging the drum to keep a centre at the heart of the community open.

Dennis, who fuse folk-rock with brass band music, are helping to raise funds for the Easington Lane Community Access Point (Elcap).

We are trying to maintain a building which has been here since 1928. We are just grateful for any help possible.

Bob Moody, chairman of Elcap

The community hub, in Brickgarth, Easington Lane, provides a host of services from training opportunities and free childcare to a shopper bus for senior citizens and social activities.

But a funding crisis has left the former Miners’ Welfare, built in 1928, in need of help.

Chairman of Elcap, Bob Moody, said: “Like everybody else in the voluntary sector, funds are drying up.

“In the last eight weeks we’ve had to lay off the last two paid staff we have, so now we are primarily run by directors and volunteers.

“We rent rooms out and the money we get from that just about pays off the utilities.

“So we survive that way, but it means we don’t have money left for anything else.

“Houghton Brass Band did a concert for us, as they practice here. That raised £700 which was brilliant, and now Dennis are helping, as they practice here.

“We are trying to maintain a building which has been here since 1928. We are just grateful for any help possible.”

As well as providing a host of services for the community, Elcap houses a heritage centre and WWI commemorative garden and room.

It also provides family activities covering a host of areas including health and wellbeing, confidence building and local community transport.

Based in Hetton, eight-piece band Dennis describe their sound as “pit pop”, influenced by their home town’s roots and heritage.

The band has performed across the country and have had their tracks played on Radio 1 and 6Music. They are currently recording their album.

• Dennis will be performing at Easington Lane Workmen’s Club on June 6. Tickets are £4, with all proceeds going to Elcap. There will also be a raffle and bingo.