Our organisation was formed in 1993 by a small group of local residents who intended to take action relating to some of the problems that their community was facing. They based their operations in the flats in Peacock Street and while they were there they managed to obtain the services of a Community Youth Worker.
They soon realised that their current centre for operations was unsuitable and so they rented a room in the Pallion Residents Association; this is when they started to accept membership to the group and acquired the services of an Admin Worker and Youth Leader and ran a Youth Club in St Luke’s Church.
The building that was in the current location of PAG, a former Pallion Institute erected in 1893 for local people to better themselves, was rented at first and then funding was sought and obtained from sources including One North East and SRB5 to allow us to purchase and rebuild.
In 1999, during the work on the new building, a bottle was found in the foundations containing clues as to how the original building came about. This consisted of a rolled up newspaper (unidentified) detailing how Liberal Councillors gave their backing to John Short for the building of the Centre and his donation towards the construction. Martin Routledge, who was at that time Assistant Keeper of Social History of Sunderland Museum, said “putting a newspaper in a bottle was the Victorian equivalent of creating a time capsule”. We placed a time-capsule of our own in the foundations during the construction of the new building
The new building was opened in 2000 and the Youth Wall on the exterior of PAG building was designed by young people who attended the Youth Club when the building was founded and contains a lot of their names.
Norman Clementson, who was PAG’s first treasurer, sadly passed away in 2011. In commemoration of his service to PAG, it was decided to replace the plain round window in the IT Suite with a stained glass window depicting some of Sunderland’s industrial and local heritage.
What we do in the community…
We are a resource for the community, adopting a community development model to meet community needs.
PAG is situated in one of the most deprived areas of Sunderland and currently operates a variety of projects and prides itself on offering a wide and diverse range of recreational and educational opportunities for the WHOLE Community.
We provide or facilitate courses for people of working age to enhance their employability and for everyone for social or recreational purposes. These courses can be arranged by PAG or by external sources and are quite often free of charge to the service user. The courses can be accredited or non-accredited and can vary in length from a couple of hours to as long as a few weeks. Recently we have had a good interest in these courses: