Carrbrook businessman pledges generous boost to community hub

A KIND-HEARTED Carrbrook-raised businessman is helping the next generation by donating to its Community Hub’s kids craft club.

Mick Cassanelli has dipped into his pocket to give them the money they need for materials and sheeting needed to keep it tidy.

But this is not a one-off lump sum, he will repeat his donation over the coming months.

Mr Cassanelli, who runs Caecillian Ltd – which works with utility companies on things like installing drains and underground cables as well as central heating systems – grew up and lived yards from the Hub’s base on the corner of Broadbent Close and Crowswood Drive.

Despite his self-made success, which sees Caecillian with large yards in Denton and Leeds, he has never forgotten his roots.

And as he saw the work volunteers put in to provide for the community, he was given a ‘thank you’ poster made by some of the 23 kids who attend.

Mr Cassanelli, who lives in Grotton, Saddleworth, said: “I literally grew up just across the road from the hub and have made my company from nothing.

“When I grew up, we always played out on the street or on land and you don’t really see that these days as there’s no space to do it.

“We had more places to play. Now all you see are ‘No Ball Games’ signs everywhere, so kids are struggling for things to do.

“I remember how I used to play when I grew up around here and I’ve never lost touch with my home, so I came to them and said I’d donate stuff to help.

“It’s not just a one-off either as in a couple of months, materials for the group will need refreshing and I’m more than happy to help out.

“For the area where I grew up and had pretty much nothing in before setting up in business, it’s the least I could do.”

Mr Cassanelli’s donation is the latest to help what is a growing part of the Carrbrook community.

Morrison’s supermarket in Dukinfield has already chipped in with donations for the craft club.

And the Forever Manchester group may put in for ‘big items’ like fridges to help them.

And after initially setting up as a place where people could get together, it is taking on a life of its own for chair Diane Shepley-Newton and secretary Linda McLarnon.

As well as tea and toast sessions on Mondays and Wednesdays, it also plays host to, among other things, the craft kids club, ‘plastic band’ groups where children can turn things like washing up liquid bottles into instruments, sign language classes and recently started are tai chi sessions.

Stalybridge North Councillor Jan Jackson also holds regular surgeries at the site.

“It’s taken on a life of its own,” said Linda. “It’s now a seven days a week thing.”

Diane added: “Mick has done well for himself and got in touch and said he wanted to donate and it’s the children he wants to get involved with as there was nothing when he was growing up.

“And I can’t believe how the Hub has taken off.”

Rosemary Maken runs the kids craft club and she admitted Mr Cassanelli’s donation of about £100 was vital.

Already, she has had members make ‘Pick up your poo’ signs that have been posted on lampposts in the area encouraging dog owners not to leave filth behind.

She said: “The money will be used for a lot of things.

“Plastic sheeting will be one we get as we made play-doh recently, the kids had a great time but afterwards we were on our hands and knees to get it out of the carpet!

“It’s really generous of Mick to give us the donation and it will be put to good use for the children in Carrbrook.”

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