7 October 2016

YMCA Guildford hosted an event on Thursday 29 September to unveil plans for the redevelopment of Midwey House, its move on accommodation at Wharf Road, Guildford. We successfully secured £1.25m funding towards the project from the Homes and Community Agency and will provide the rest of the money (£1.3m) from our own sources. The new design will accommodate 34 local young people, a significant increase on the current 13 units.

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Artist’s impression of the new Midwey House design (to be know as YMCA Guildford Foyer when finished)

Work has already begun to create the extra spaces and the building should see the first young residents move in around May 2017. Chas Walker told the assembled audience of church leaders, local stakeholders, individual and corporate supporters and volunteers that the new development will be a home for those who are ‘work ready’ but still need a helping hand. Chas said, “This opportunity to improve and expand our offer to local young people is exciting for us, but in order to do so we will need the support of local stakeholders and businesses over the coming months.”  The new housing project will have 24 hour staff support and encourage the residents to engage with training and education with a view to finding permanent employment. As part of this process the young people will also have the opportunity to meet with local volunteer mentors through the YMCA Positive Placements project.

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Photo from left to right: Mayor of Guildford Councillor Gordon Jackson and the Mayoress Sue Jackson; YMCA DLG Chair John Slater; YMCA DLG Director of Communities & Property Services Anne Cairns; YMCA DLG Guildford Services Manager Steve Darken; YMCA DLG CEO Chas Walker.

Midwey House opened as a purpose built hostel in 1969 and for over 45 years has provided local young people with safe accommodation. The building has shown its age for some time, and this redevelopment is timely. When it reopens it will be known as YMCA Guildford Foyer.

Local businesses and individuals are being invited to sponsor spaces such as the 34 self-contained rooms, the communal kitchen or the outdoor space.  Smaller donations will contribute towards creating welcome packs for the young people as they move in. Click here to find out more.