Renewed hope for future working of village hall

Crimplesham Village Hall.

Crimplesham Village Hall. - Credit: Archant

A west Norfolk parish council is looking to carry onward with a "refreshed community spirit" over its village hall following question over its future.

Crimplesham Village Hall was described as a "going concern" before the pandemic with a few groups making use of the building and concern being raised over senior trustees finding it difficult to manage.

The hall is also said to be in need of significant maintenance costs including refurbishment of the main floor that is "likely to cost tens of thousands."

Crimplesham Village Hall.

Crimplesham Village Hall. - Credit: Archant

The building, which was originally build in 1905 as a Methodist Chapel and village room, was bought by local residents in 1979 to keep it as a village hall for the community.

In recent years, it has been used for coffee mornings, children's dance classes and pop up pub The Crimplesham Arms.

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After calls for people to join the management committee in 2019 to look after bookings, caretaking and administration produced no responses, Crimplesham Parish Council discussed its future, with suggestions put forward that it could potentially be rebuilt on the playing field in a £1m project.

The council felt public consultation was needed and sent out letters to residents earlier this month to gauge their opinion and to call for help.

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Chairman David Lane said: "The parish council, identifying the village hall as the only community asset to hold meetings, events and classes have been supporting the Village Hall Trust with an annual donation of £900 for several years to deal with maintenance costs."

The letter and survey said if no volunteers came forward trustees would have to consider alternatives which could include transferring the hall to the parish council as sole trustees to manage, or close the hall and possibly sell it.

But after receiving 33 responses to the survey, the chairman said things are looking promising with people now interested in filling key positions that would "see the charity continue to run."

The chairman added: "The parish council remains committed to supporting the village hall for the community come what may and in whatever direction the future and new trust and management committee decided to take it."

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