A dilapidated former pub that was bought by the Wycombe Islamic Society has been turned into a “vibrant” new community centre – and was officially opened at the weekend.

The run-down Happy Wanderer on Arnison Avenue was bought by Wycombe Islamic Society in 2015 in a bid to create a new hub for community groups to meet, regardless of faith, called The Hive.

Two years on from the purchase – which was completed with funds from the Muslim community – and after a major refurbishment project, the centre has finally opened its doors to the public.

Dignitaries from across Wycombe – including Steve Baker MP, Wycombe District Council chairman Cllr Suzanne Brown and fellow councillors Arif Hussain, Rafiq Raja, Sarfaraz Raja, Dominic Barnes, Khalil Ahmed and Julia Wassell – joined the official launch on Saturday.

The new centre has meeting rooms, a hall that can hold around 100 people for events and has 25 parking spaces and visitors were given a tour of the building at the opening ceremony.

The revamp was made possible by a £75,000 funding boost from the Veolia Environmental Trust.

WISE now hopes to work with community groups to set up a youth club, scout group, fitness classes, foodbank and coffee mornings.

The charity also plans to move some of its educational activities from the Wycombe Islamic Centre in St Marks Close to the newly refurbished site.

Amjad Iqbal, who has taken the lead on the renovation project, said the centre will be a “comfortable safe place that embraces the diversity of Wycombe”.

He added: “I hope it will become an integral part of the lives of local residents, community groups and organisations and help bring people together in the Wycombe area.”

Mr Baker said: “Many congratulations to WISE on the opening of a facility which promises to serve the whole community.

“The launch was a very happy occasion founded on an expansive and inclusive vision of society. I wish them every success.”