AN historic social club that was set for closure has been saved thanks to an unexpected £36,000 cash boost.

The Tele reported last week about the growing fears that the RAF Club in the west end wouldn't see out the year due to a backlog of major repairs needed to bring it up to date.

Committee members, who are the trustees of the building, were told by the Royal Air Force Association that it would close down if the work, estimated at £60,000, wasn't done.

The committee applied for funding but didn't know if they would be successful and how much, of anything they would receive.

But the trustees have now been thrown a huge lifeline from the RAFA headquarters in Leicester.

Stuart Main, chair of Greenock RAFA, said: "We have managed to secure £36,500 and that means we can carry out all the electrics, fire alarm system and windows.

"We are absolutely overwhelmed.

"It's more than half of what we need.

"It's great, a big chunk towards the refurbishment.

"We are a registered charity and if there are any local firms that could helps us, it would be much appreciated.

"What a difference a few days make - the future of the club is now secure."

Work should start after the annual general meeting on March 14.

The club has until May to employ contractors and November to complete the work.

Stuart said: "I want to thank our treasurer George Parke for doing all the paperwork.

"The future is bright and we have protected jobs in the club."

The club was formed in 1947 and it one of the last of its kind in Scotland with the RAFA, a support charity for serving and non-serving members, acting as landlord and the social club as tenant.

The two-storey building badly needs refurbishment, with the last major modernisation taking place when the function suite opened in 1975.

Like many other similar clubs it has struggling to attract new members and only opens from Wednesday to Sunday

It's hoped the cash boost will help bring a turnaround in the club's fortunes and the committee hopes the revamp will encourage more people to use it.

The committee have launched a fundraising campaign to collect money needed with an Elvis tribute on April 20 and a ladies night on June 8.

If any local firms could help with the work they should call the club on 07508498545 or email Stuart on