JANUARY COMMUNITY OF THE MONTH – LONDON

Founded in the 19th century, the community of London is a historic town on the banks of the Kanawha River. It is home to the London Locks and Dam as well as a national historic building currently known as the Booker T. Washington Community Center.

London benefited greatly from Franklin D. Roosevelt’s ‘New Deal,’ with an estimated $3.3 million (nearly $65.5 million today) invested into the construction of the eponymous dam. At 26’ tall and 557.5’ long, the dam was a critical piece of infrastructure that made year-round navigation of the Kanawha River possible. 

The Booker T. Washington Community Center was listed in the National Register of Historic Places by the National Park Service in 1999. The building, formerly known as Booker T. Washington High School, Grant Junior High School, and Grant Elementary School, was constructed in 1925 and is widely known as being one of the first dedicated secondary schools for African-American students in the state of West Virginia. The school welcomed students from as far away as Oak Hill and Ansted, operating until desegregation took place in 1956.

In the summer of 2020, Active SWV expanded our service area to include Boone and Kanawha Counties. Everyone within the organization is excited to share our mission with the residents of London and community leaders. In fact, we are actively searching for members in the London community that would be interested in leading physical activity programs for their friends and family. Training and the cost of certification are covered by Active SWV. Training includes risk management, CPR/First Aid, group dynamics, and activity promotion. Past activities have included hiking & walking groups, tai chi, water aerobics, stand up paddleboarding, and more! The possibilities are endless!

If you or someone you know is interested in free training to offer physical activity programs in the town of London, please call 304-254-8488 or email Erin Reid at Erin@activeswv.com.

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