Harpenden’s Community Meeting Point (CMP) is delighted to be back in business at its home in Station Road and looking forward to welcoming new customers and stock for its popular charity shop.

Volunteers and staff had been denied access to the Harding Parade property for six weeks, while Hightown Housing Association, which runs CMP, resolved a rent issue with the landlord.

It meant CMP’s hub, which helps 26 local people with mental health issues by offering support and a range of activities, had to move to temporary facilities with volunteers, staff and members bringing in their own equipment so the much-needed service could continue.

They were grateful to the support of the Methodist Church in the High Street and the United Reformed Church, Vaughan Road, which opened their doors to the charity when it had nowhere else to go.

Hightown’s Support Worker Angela Greenaway said it was still an unsettling time for the CMP members, especially as routine and stability are important for many of them.

But she added: “It was fantastic to see how the volunteers and members pulled together to maintain a structure and keep everyone’s spirits up. Many of them have been with the service for several years and they’ve built up strong relationships.”

Long-term CMP member Bob Cherry has written a letter to thank those involved. He said: “I would like to express our sincere thanks and gratitude to the local churches that have offered shelter and support. They have gone the distance in keeping our service open.

“Special credit should be given to the members who use the service for their perseverance at such a difficult time. Hightown must also be praised for their commitment to our charity. Without their help and support CMP would not exist.”

The charity shop, which provides fund-raising support for CMP as well as offering work experience to its members, re-opened its doors on Tuesday (31st May) and volunteers would appreciate any donations to help boost the stock.

A reunion party to thank members and volunteers for their support during the past six weeks will also be taking place on Friday (3rd June).