Campaigners fight to save village hall by buying it from owner for £100k

PUBLISHED: 07:00 26 September 2017

Members of the campaign to save the village hall and of one of the dog training groups which has used the hall for decades.

Members of the campaign to save the village hall and of one of the dog training groups which has used the hall for decades.

Archant

A village hall which is 'widely used' and 'key to community spirit' could be lost, unless campaigners can muster £100,000 to buy it by 2019.

Hewish and Puxton Village Hall has been at the heart of the parish for more than 50 years, but villagers face losing their only community facility after the landlord declined to extend the lease – and instead aims to sell the site for £100,000.

The lease on the Maysgreen Lane building expires at the beginning of 2019, and campaigners are already working hard to prevent the ‘severe impact’ losing the hall would have on the community.

Chairman of the village hall committee, Christine Richardson, believes the facility is vital to the parish.

She said: “It’s a very busy and popular facility. The playgroup, the parish council, and the WI use it, and one of the dog groups has been here for more than 30 years.

“It’s the local polling station, North Somerset Brass Band uses it and we’ve got a couple of dance groups who use it too, so it is widely used.

“We’re making applications to the lottery fund and the National Grid for grants, and there are other charitable organisations which we hope are going to step up to the plate and donate some money.

“All of the groups that use the hall are going to have some events; it’s going to be a real community effort.

“If we can’t raise the money we will lose it, and I think that would have a quite severe impact on the villages. It is key to community spirit.”

A campaign to save the village hall has already been created on social media, and placards promoting the cause have been placed along the A370.

Some £40,000 has already been pledged to the appeal, and Ms Richardson hopes once the remaining money is sourced the hall can be upgraded to bolster its facilities.

She added: “What we’re trying to do is provide a lot more facilities for local people, because there is not a lot for people here in Puxton and Hewish.

“We’re trying to develop it so we can have a coffee shop a couple of times a month, or perhaps a bar evening once a month and things like that.”

For more information on the campaign, visit www.facebook.com/saveourvillagehall/

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