Village Hall rebuild put on hold but will be revived

Brentor’s Village Hall and Playing Field Committee has been looking for ideas on how to move forward with rebuilding the main hall of the Village Hall, but the pandemic has put their plans on hold.  The Village Hall and Playing Field is a registered charity, whose duty is to run the Village Hall and Playing Field for the benefit of our community.

Although the Hall was improved with a new kitchen, toilets and store in 2010, the old part of the building, dating from 1912, has significant problems with its fabric.  About 20 villagers (including most of the Parish Council) went to the meeting earlier this year about future plans for the Hall and heard from Sheryl Burroughs, the Chair of the Committee, that a structural survey of the hall has revealed that the Hall’s outer cladding will need complete replacement.  There is also a great need to address the condensation problem of the old building, relating to its lack of insulation.  Click here to read the full Village Hall Structural survey.

Many attendees at the meeting expressed a great love for the Hall in its present form, but the meeting overwhelmingly came to the conclusion that it would be far wiser to attempt to rebuild the Hall, enabling it to be properly insulated and to improve the quality of its provision for our village, rather than trying to continually repair the existing building.

The Village Hall and Playing Field Committee set up a sub-committee to progress the rebuilding of the main hall.  It met in October 2020.  Due to the large sum of money that will be needed to rebuild, it was clear that a substantial amount would need to be won from sources such as the National Lottery and previous funders of the village hall such as the Biffa landfill tax fund.  Sadly the biggest potential funder, the National Lottery, is currently, and for the foreseeable future, only funding pandemic recovery projects .

Therefore the Committee has decided to put the work of rebuilding the hall on hold.  Much of the background work has been done in planning for the rebuilding and there is substantial experience from the initial refurbishment of the hall done in 2010, so hopefully when the financial situation becomes more easy the project will be resurrected.  Sheryl Burroughs assures the village that the idea of a rebuild has not gone away and the project will be resurrected in due course.  She said that reasonable repairs have had to be done recently to improve the appearance of the hall frontage in order to continue to attract users to the hall – irrespective of the Committee’s long term aspirations. The cost (£3,500) was met from part of the covid grant given by WDBC.