A GRIEVING mum fighting to set up a centre to deter young people from booze and trouble is determined to achieve her vision despite feeling let down by empty promises and “a catch 22” situation.
Di Reynolds says there have been constant setbacks in setting up the Danny Reynolds Centre and the battle to find premises.
She says without a venue they cannot get funding but without funding they will struggle to afford a building.
She says a centre is more important than ever as two youngsters have been hospitalised recently due to alcohol abuse.
But as the anniversary of Danny’s death is approaching she says she will never give up her fight - as the support from the public has been overwhelming.
Mrs Reynolds, daughter Tia Wynt, 15, friends and family began campaigning after West Way resident Danny, 21, died in November 2010 in a car crash near Haughton.
The driver had been drinking alcohol. They wanted to find a town centre venue for a meeting area, gym, creche and street church.
Mrs Reynolds said: “The county council said they would help me find a building and offer it at a peppercorn rent.
"They offered me Sandyford Street project which proved to be unrealistic as it was to be demolished in July. They then informed me that they had looked at all their empty stock and nothing was fit for purpose.
I proposed to downscale elements of the centre but they told me they could not accommodate that either.
“I feel let down by the county council because I don’t feel they tried hard enough to help. I was led to believe my venture was to be supported. Lots of meetings, discussions and emails mounted to very little.”
Mrs Reynolds said fund-raising had mostly paid for the outreach football team and training for young people.
She said she would continue for the next 10 years until she had enough to buy a building herself.
“I made a promise to Danny’s memory and I made a promise to all the young people who have come into my path, and there is not a chance I will let them down. “
A spokesman for Staffordshire County Council said: "We have worked very hard to support Mrs Reynolds in her ambitions to set up a centre for young people, but unfortunately the amount of available county council property is extremely limited in the Stafford area.
"Our understanding was that Mrs Reynolds would be happy with a temporary, six months occupancy to get the group up and running and offered Sandyford Street on this basis, but this offer was never taken up.”