In 1992, local Woodvale residents identified a lack of both a community focal point and co-ordinated activities. Initially the group met in a disused school, but in 1999 (having secured charitable status) residents convinced the borough council to provide a purpose built community centre on the original site of the school.
Woodvale & Ainsdale Community Association (WACA) established itself as a charitable organisation based in the Woodvale area of Ainsdale, Southport. The new centre was as an integral part of a scheme to build a new housing estate and primary school for the area.
This area is covered by the Middle Super output area Sefton 011. It is an isolated and deprived estate which is surrounded by far more prosperous areas. The Woodvale area has a population of approximately 2733 households, and 5042 people over the age of 16 (of which 1068 are on benefits, unemployed or low grade workers), with 6291 residents in total (Source: www.statistics.gov.uk 2011).
Of the 2733 households, 779 are rented, with a high proportion of social landlords. The local estate consists of approximately 681 households in the roads surrounding the centre, including Sandbrook Road, Cherry Road, Lilac Avenue, Meadow Lane, Heather Close, Shirdley Crescent, Sandbrook Way and Rose Crescent where there are pockets of major deprivation.
- Sefton 011B is within Ainsdale ward and one of 189 LSOAs in Sefton local authority district.
- According to the 2015 Index of Multiple Deprivation (IMD), this particular area – Sefton 011B (LSOA E01006924 rank of 5,060 out of 32,844 LSOAs (where a rank of 1 is the most deprived LSOA).
- 29.5% – falls within the 20% most deprived LSOAs nationally on the IMD, with a of the population in Sefton 011B are living in income deprived households (See Income Score (rate) in File 5 on the 2015 English Indices of deprivation web page, link below) while 24.7% of the working age adults are employment deprived. Put differently, Sefton 011B falls within the 20% most deprived LSOAs nationally on the Income domain and falls within the 10% most deprived LSOAs nationally on the employment domain.
- 28.4% of children in Sefton 011B are living in income deprived households, putting it in the 3rd decile or the most deprived 30% of LSOAs on the IDACI (Income Deprivation Affecting Children Index). Whereas 36.9% of older people are living in income deprived households putting Sefton 011B in the 1st decile or the most deprived 10% of LSOAs on the IDAOPI (Income Deprivation Affecting Older People Index).
According to the Sefton Health Profile (2013), deprivation in the area is higher than average and 9800 children in Sefton live in poverty. There are different deprivation levels throughout Sefton, and Woodvale suffers with much higher levels of deprivation than the surrounding areas, with 1735 households suffering deprivation. Long term unemployment is much worse in Sefton (14.4%) than the average for England (9.5%)
WACA “area of benefit” has since increased to the boundaries of Ainsdale, with priority given to the deprived communities of Woodvale.