Makeover for village hall after winning £10k grant

PUBLISHED: 06:14 18 January 2018

Bid organiser Mike Phipps and Treasurer Jan Phipps.

Bid organiser Mike Phipps and Treasurer Jan Phipps.

Archant

A village hall has enjoyed a great transformation after its band of volunteers received a grant of more than £10,000.

Portbury Village Hall.Portbury Village Hall.

Refurbishment work has led to Portbury Village Hall being a hive of activity in recent weeks and the community are delighted with the results.

Better lighting, a new floor and more has enabled the hall to be modernised and will mean it is better suited to host a range of activities in the future.

However, the work was only possible thanks to a £10,878 grant from Biffa through the Landfill Communities Fund.

The waste and recycling firm said it was delighted to provide the building with a fresh lease of life.

The hall was gifted to the village in 1892 by a local philanthropist.

In more recent times it has acted as a venue for village meetings and the monthly community café but it needed a bit of work to improve its appearance and to ensure health and safety standards were maintained.

Visitors entering the hall will not fail to notice the complete overhaul of the floor and new LED lighting, but the fire doors and electrical systems have also been upgraded.

The hall can only run thanks to its volunteers and Sharon Worthy, who is chairman of the committee, said the donation has made a big difference.

She said: “Without support like this we would struggle to provide funding for such major works.

“We make only a small surplus each year and this is usually spent on minor upkeep of the building.

“Our hall is a community facility and we aim to make it available to our residents at a reasonable cost.

To fund work like this would require us to charge ridiculous rents which would kill off demand.”

Gilian French, Biffa’s head of grants, said the firm was happy to help.

She said: “Biffa Award is proud to support this project that has brought the village hall back to life.

“It is great to know that this building will continue to provide a fantastic space that will bring the community together.”

Anyone keen to use the hall, or lounge and skittle alley, can call the booking secretary on 01275 374754.


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