Secret Millionaire donates thousands to the Timebridge Centre in New Addington
A VITAL community centre under threat of closure received a huge boost when a mystery benefactor donated thousands of pounds to help safeguard its future.
The Advertiser can reveal the Timebridge Centre, in Fieldway, will soon be catapulted into the limelight after it was given £17,000 via the hit Channel 4 show The Secret Millionaire.
Film crews have spent several weeks at the centre filming what staff members thought was a documentary on the area after the riots.
But last week, a man being filmed by crews explained that it was all a cover and that he was in fact a secret millionaire, before handing over a cheque for £17,000.
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Fieldway councillor Carole Bonner said: "It is fantastic news for the area.
"I had no idea before, but the fact the Secret Millionaire has come to the area and someone has decided to pledge money is just brilliant.
"One of the best things about the centre is the junior club, which is the only one of its kind in the area. It encourages young children to get involved in activities from a young age, giving them something to do."
The Secret Millionaire involves wealthy benefactors saying goodbye to their luxury lifestyles and going undercover in deprived areas, to find out who needs their help.
The Timebridge Centre has had the threat of closure hovering over it since Croydon Council removed its funding under budget cuts in September.
Since then, worried residents have highlighted the plight of the centre, and are delighted by the mystery donation.
Resident Anita Davison said: "Timebridge has been a godsend to our young people over the years, many of whom were isolated or lacking in the confidence to attend mainstream clubs."
Mel Bonner, 40, added: "New Addington gets forgotten a lot of the time, but it is good to show the positives we have up here."
It is believed the show featuring Timebridge will be aired at some point in August.
The identity of the Secret Millionaire is, for now, being kept under wraps.