STAFF at Inverkip Hub say they never dreamed the venue would be so successful when it started running classes two years ago.

The hub, which hosts a variety of activities throughout the week, has just marked its second birthday.

Staff have calculated a footfall of around 2,500 a month in 2018 and say that the centre is getting busier all the time.

Manager Kevin Rodgers said: “I was sat here at the beginning in a building with no furniture.

“I knew it had the potential to be great but we have been surprised at how well it has been used, it's been amazing.

“The building is great but it's nothing without the people and people from the local community and further afield have been brilliant supporters.”

The hub is a hive of activity every night of the week with every room in use between the hours of seven and nine.

It caters for all ages, from babies and toddlers up to senior citizens.

Kevin said: “There are always people coming in and out making for a great atmosphere.

“There is such diversity in the clubs and classes that run, so there really is something for everyone.”

The hub has more than 25 different activities running during the week including Boogie Bugs, walking football, Zumba Gold, table tennis, tai chi, guitar and piano lessons and dance classes.

The centre has become so busy that additional workers had to be taken on.

Martin Mulholland started out as a volunteer and is now a paid member of staff.

Sean Devlin stayed on as a volunteer and has now been hired as well, undertaking an apprenticeship.

As well as the staff members the hub relies on Inverclyde Council, its committee, local businesses, a group of volunteers and the public for support.

Kevin said: “The hub continues to grow thanks to the dedication of all those involved.

“In November we started a youth drop in after noticing the young people coming down and not really having anywhere to go.

“Now we have between 18 and 25 young people stopping in on a Monday night to play football and take part in arts and crafts.

“We have started showing movies and the response from the community has been great, we had 110 people at the last one and it was a real family friendly event.”

Martin says the best thing about working at the hub is its diversity.

He told the Tele: “Every day in here is different and a new challenge but there is always so much positivity and we get great feedback, everyone seems to appreciate having the hub.”

Kevin estimates that the facility currently generates two thirds of the running costs with hall hire, parties, pitch hire and donations and the team are working towards full sustainability.

Kevin said: “Inverkip is expanding and so are we.

"The hub is really needed, we add to what is already available here and work with the community to build a facility for everyone.

“We are looking to improve the acoustics with a view to hosting live music events and would like to continue with the cinema idea and try and show some more films.

“We're also working on a bike project and looking to build an extension on the back of the building for storage.

“The hub is always busy but it’s good and we hope it stays that way.”