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Greener Canvey club has risen from ashes
11:47am Tuesday 3rd July 2012 in Castle Point
A COMMUNITY club which was destroyed by fire has risen from the ashes after a £200,000 rebuild.
The Corner Club, in High Street, Canvey, was left in ruins after a devastating blaze tore through the 100-year-old building in November 2010.
The club was one of five businesses wrecked by the fire, which started in a cannabis factory behind the site.
Castle Point Council was initially recommended to reject the rebuilding plans over flooding fears, but the proposal was later approved.
Co-owners Lee Petch, 46, and Frank Bennett, 59, both from Canvey, have since worked tirelessly to rebuild and reopen the bar.
Scores of residents packed out the club to mark its official reopening and toast its future success.
Castle Point Conservative MP Rebecca Harris was on hand to cut the ribbon.
Mr Petch said: “Things are going very well now we are back up and running.
“All of our old customers have come back and a lot of new ones too, which is great.
“It was a real shame to lose the old building, but our new club is a lot more environmentally friendly and looks a lot brighter too.
“We were also very pleased Rebecca was able to come down.
“She has been very supportive all the way along.”
While the majority of the rebuild is complete, staff are still putting the finishing touches to the new building to allow the club to have a separate sports and games area.
Mrs Harris said: “It was so good to be asked to reopen the Corner Club. Since the awful night the old club burnt down, Lee and Frank have shown phenomenal grit and determination to get it rebuilt, and they deserve immense respect and support for having made it.
“The new club looks great and I am proud to be one of their newest members.”