YOUNGSTERS and leaders at a Penarth Scout group are celebrating, after a charitable foundation run by the owners of the Penarth Times awarded them the money they needed to make urgent repairs to the roof of their headquarters.

Leaders of the 15th Penarth (Owen-Dicks) Scout Group have called the Gannett Foundation grant – for more then £8,000 – a 'god-send' which will mean 'a fresh start for 2012', after the leaking roof threatened the group's existence.

Originally established in the early 1950s, the 15th Penarth Scout Group initially met in a local school hall, before Elfed Avenue Church presented them with a small piece of unused land behind the church premises.

Work to create their headquarters was carried out by group leaders and volunteer parents, led by then scoutmaster John Dicks and his assistants John and David Owen.

And their work served the group well for many years, until flooding caused by damage to the roof threatened their future.

Current chairperson Pat Davies and Scout group leader Roger Morse said the children would benefit immensely from the Gannett Foundation grant.

“The damage to the roof was restricting what we could do,” said Pat.

“Rain was coming in and causing damage to the plaster walls. We kept going as much as we could, but the grant will make a huge difference to the children’s experience here.”

Roger added: “It means a fresh start in the new year.

“We really are grateful for it, as it’s very hard to get grants at the level we required. It’s a god-send really.”

* The Gannett Foundation is the charitable arm of the Gannett Co. Inc, owner of the Newsquest Media Group, publishers of more than 300 newspapers and more than 100 websites nationwide - including the Penarth Times.

* The Foundation provides funding to support local organisations in the areas where Newsquest operates in the UK. The Fund is managed by the Quartet Community Foundation.

* The Gannett Foundation supports projects, which take a creative approach to local community needs, from which a large number of people in that community benefit.

* The Foundation gives priority to projects of lasting benefit such as a specially adapted mini buses for elderly people or people with disabilities; projects that benefit people with special needs either through disability or disadvantage; sport, environment, conservation and local history projects.

* Applications must be submitted via the local newspaper. Details on when the next round of grants will be made will appear in the Penarth Times.