Rita Taylor was on hand to officially open the extension to Watford FC Community Sports and Education Trust’s Cedars Youth & Community Centre earlier this week.
Seven years on from her late husband, Graham Taylor OBE, opening the centre in 2012, Rita returned to the site alongside Hornets goalkeeper, Heurelho Gomes, to unveil the additional facilities.
The extended community centre was made possible after netting a £635,540 grant from the Football Foundation, £150,000 from London Marathon Charitable Trust, £20,000 from The Bernard Sunley Charitable Foundation and £110,000 from Watford FC’s CSE Trust itself.
Work began on the site in September 2018.
The grant enabled an extension to the existing building, creating three new activity rooms, two of which can be combined to form one larger room.
The new extension and flexible meeting room spaces will enable Watford FC CSE Trust to deliver a range of courses such as FA First Aid, Premier League Kicks sessions, safeguarding training, Level 1 football coaching and refereeing courses, London Sport courses and alternative education opportunities.
In addition to schemes run by Watford FC’s official charity, the centre will be utilised by local community groups, with Harrow Mencap already confirmed as a full-time occupant at the site.
This is just the latest way in which Watford FC’s CSE Trust is making a positive difference in Harrow.
Steve Williams, Head of Facilities and Inclusion at Watford FC’s CSE Trust said:
“Firstly thank you to Rita Taylor and family for officially opening our new extension at Cedars Youth & Community Centre alongside Heurelho Gomes, who has always been such a great ambassador for our work here.
“This work will help us continue to improve the lives of those in our local area and for that I would like to thank our funders; Premier League, The FA and the Government’s Football Foundation, London Marathon Charitable Trust and the Bernard Sunley Charitable Foundation.”
The extension of Cedars Youth & Community Centre wasn’t the only reason to celebrate though, as Heurelho Gomes was presented with a cake to thank him for his commitment to the local community throughout his time with Watford Football Club.
The Brazilian goalkeeper has made many visits to the Centre over the years and has proven himself to be a fantastic role model for local young people.