£82,513 for Woolton Hill Church Hall
Woolton Hill Church Hall has existed for more than 100 years, with a long history of support by the whole community. A commemoration stone in the Hall Meeting room reads: “The extension to this room was added by the efforts of the WHWI 1927”.
The Hall continues to be well used by many groups throughout the area. It is home to the Woolton Hill Pre-School, the Village Market, Brownies, other local clubs and societies, private parties, Sunday School, church youth group, holiday club for children suffering with autism and many other meetings and events. It is also used as a polling station for local and general elections.
Despite much good work over the years to maintain the hall, it was in need of significant essential maintenance and improvement to secure its future as a hub and resource for the community. All facilities were at the end of their life and no longer fit for purpose; heating, lighting, toilets and storage were all inadequate and the key regular users found their activities restricted . Additionally, there was a need to provide a safer environment for Pre-School, children’s parties, etc.
Following much consultation and significant initial fundraising, planning permission was obtained for an ambitious scheme to extend and refurbish the hall:
- The extension to the side has provided a new entrance, additional storage, new toilets (including “accessible” and also segregation for the children), cloakrooms and two meeting rooms.
- Space in the main hall has been extended by removal of the stage.
- Heating and lighting have all been updated.
- The kitchen has been refurbished to a “commercial” standard and a new hatch to the hall has been added to enable refreshments to be served directly to those in the hall.
- The existing meeting room has also been refurbished.
The increased amount of storage throughout the refurbished hall will enable regular users to store their equipment securely. The new lighting, heating and improved insulation will also make the operation of the hall significantly more energy efficient.
The Trust donated a total of £82,513 towards the project through its CBIP funding scheme. The refurbishment of the hall was completed in 3 phases, culminating in a grand opening in September 2014.