How did it all start? 

Disability Recreation Unity Movement (DRUM) was started by a small group of disabled volunteers who wanted to improve local resources for people with physical disabilities, as there was nothing else in the area.  

DRUM became a registered charity on 15th October 1994 and after receiving funding from Hertfordshire County Council (Adult Care Services) moved in to the Balmoral Centre in Clive Way. 

DRUM employed a part time co-ordinator and a support worker and the group ran two sessions from the Balmoral Centre on a Friday and Saturday, offering art and yoga sessions.  A further two sessions were then opened at Centre Point Community Centre in Watford on a Monday and Organ Hall in Borehamwood on a Wednesday.

The Balmoral Centre closed in 2006 and DRUM relocated to Parkgate Community Centre in Southwold Road.  This was a real turning point for DRUM.

DRUM started running the four sessions from Parkgate Community Centre as this was more cost effective, easier for staff and volunteers and the members from all the different groups were able to get to know one another.  

DRUM increased its art and community events and introduced work experience placements to local schools, West Herts College, Z'Up Project and the Prince's Trust.  This helped DRUM raise its profile in the community and more volunteers joined.  Many of the young students stayed on at DRUM as regular volunteers.  More volunteers enabled DRUM to increase the range of activities available and the improvements to the service encouraged more disabled members to join.  There was also an increase in the number of younger members joining DRUM. With more volunteers and more members, DRUM saw an increase in the amount of help received from families, friends and the local community.  

The Dragons' Apprentice Challenge (run by the Watford & Three Rivers Trust) has helped DRUM enormously, introducing DRUM to new schools and new businesses, who continue to support DRUM even after the challenge has finished.   The Dragons' Apprentice Challenge has also helped raise nearly £20,000 for DRUM over the past three years.

In April 2013 DRUM took over the lease of Parkgate Community Centre, our first permanent home in over 20 years!

The community centre is an old building that was built in 1933, as an annex building to Parkgate School.  It was passed over for community use in 1984 and DRUM moved in August 2006, sharing facilities with other groups.  DRUM has now taken over the lease and management of Parkgate Community Centre and has carried out a huge refurbishment project.

Go to Parkgate Refurbishment

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