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05 February 2024

Culture Secretary, Lucy Frazer cuts the ribbon at the Chichester Shed

Young people and youth workers are celebrating as the brand-new Chichester Shed youth centre opened its doors for the first time. The Shed, funded by the Youth Investment Fund, is the first new build youth centre to complete. The Chichester Shed youth centre is run by Chichester Community Development Trust and based in a deprived and under resourced area. It will be a safe haven for young people, giving them every opportunity to have fun, explore their passions and develop vital skills for life and work.

Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, Lucy Frazer marked the occasion, meeting young people at a ribbon cutting celebration at the Chichester Shed. The Culture Secretary experienced youth work in action, as young people enjoyed skateboarding, DIY skills, music, gardening, and a well-being yoga workshop. The Culture Secretary met youth worker Gavin Walker with Mia and Charlie; two young people supported by the Shed. Mia and Charlie shared their excitement for their new youth centre and the difference it will make to their lives.


Welcoming Lucy Frazer to the Chichester Shed, Clare de Bathe, CEO for the Chichester Community Development Trust said:

“The building of the Chichester Shed will provide an informal, dynamic and versatile space where young people can connect, learn and experience new activities. The space will be a haven for all ages and backgrounds to use throughout the school day and holidays, including intergenerational activities where boundaries can be broken down as well as adult education sessions and group workshops delivered. The Youth Investment Fund grant has enabled the project ideas to be brought to a reality and we cannot wait to open the doors!”

I want to see every young person have someone to talk to, something to do, and somewhere to go, no matter where they are from, to help maximise their potential in life. The Youth Investment Fund is delivering lasting change for young people, so it was brilliant to see The Shed opening its doors to the young people of Chichester. I was thrilled to meet young people, hear their stories, and see high-quality youth work in action. The fund is giving young people every opportunity to thrive and gain the skills needed to succeed in life.

Culture Secretary Lucy Frazer

Nick Temple, CEO for Social Investment Business said:

“The Youth Investment Fund is transforming the youth service landscape right across the country, enabling youth centres of all shapes and sizes to enhance their services and reach more young people.”

“It’s very exciting to see the first Youth Investment Fund new build open its doors to Chichester’s young people today. Before securing the funding, these young people had nowhere safe to go, and nothing to do after school.  Young people now have a brand-new youth centre, inspired by their ideas and needs, giving them every opportunity to thrive and discover their passions. The Youth Investment Fund is truly unlocking potential and creating a legacy for future generations of young people in communities like this across the country. “

Photo credit: Emily Lovell


The Shed received a Youth Investment Fund grant of £421,375.00 in August 2023, and work started on site in late August. It’s been a rapid build project, taking just six months to complete. The Shed is a custom-built space, accommodating both workspaces and social spaces enabling the provision of a range of activities and opportunities for young people that is completely lacking in the city. It provides an open access youth offer in the evenings and throughout the holidays, giving young people a space to relax, gain confidence and new skills, and take part in engaging activities.

Photo credi: Emily Lovell

It’s a space that will also connect young people with the outdoors. It overlooks their community gardens and the local cricket green, and young people can enjoy using a new fire pit and outdoor space to experience the feeling of camping and connecting with nature. During the day the space will be used to support young people not engaged in education, employment, or training, supporting their wellbeing, and helping them to gain vital life skills.

The Shed will not only be a vibrant new space for young people, but it will also bring generations together. The idea is to enable older “shedders” to share their shed skills with young people – things like wood and metal work, electronics, and other life skills. By bringing generations together it will help everyone to connect with others face to face; creating a space where ‘shedders’ engage with each other ‘shoulder to shoulder’ as a more manageable means of socialising, learning, and collaborating.

The Shed is a lifeline to local young people giving them a safe haven they can call their own; somewhere to meet friends, be themselves and have every opportunity to thrive.

Photo credit: Emily Lovell


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