Major refurbishments to the village hall in Kirkton are now complete, and to celebrate, an opening ceremony is planned for Saturday 30th October 2010 from 7:30pm. All are welcome to attend, to see what has been achieved and to be treated to some local musical entertainment.
The village hall has been in use by the people of Kirkmahoe parish for more than 100 years. In April 1903 a grand concert and ball was arranged to celebrate the opening, and since then the hall has seen many diverse activities, from christenings, birthdays, wedding parties and funeral teas, to Burns Suppers, Keep Fit, Youth Clubs and Political Meetings. During World War II it was commandeered for use as a food store. In recent times the hall regularly hosts Badminton, Bowling and Old Tyme Dancing, as well as many other community group meetings, including those for the SWRI, Heritage Group and Community Council.
For some time the members of the committee, managing Kirkmahoe Parish Hall, have been exploring ways of improving the hall facilities. Since the last major improvements in 1992, little, other than essential repairs, had been carried out, and it was felt that a refurbishment was overdue. In late 2009 a programme of seeking funding was initiated at the same time as involving local builders to quote for the proposed work.
The funding required for the refurbishment was confirmed in July 2010, with Robert Hastings, the main building contractor, starting work soon after. Completed in early October at a cost of £42,000 the ambitious improvements will keep the one hundred year old hall at the forefront of the community and, by maintaining its attractiveness to Kirkmahoe parish and outside users, ensure its future sustainability.
Funding for this impressive community project has come from Dumfries & Galloway - Village Halls Improvement Scheme, Awards for All – Scotland, SWEAT (South West Environmental Action Trust), Airtricity (SSE Renewables), Hugh Fraser Foundation and Robertson Trust.
The refurbishment has provided improvements to all areas of the hall and includes a new well-appointed kitchen to support functions and events, access to allow use by wheelchair users, new flooring and decoration, new lighting and a disabled toilet. New emergency lighting and fire alarm systems complete the biggest refurbishment to the hall for many years.
The Hall Management Committee hope that these refurbishments will encourage the continued use of the hall to not only bring together the community, but also to offer it as a friendly, intimate and versatile event venue for hire.
Trevor Hayward, village hall management committee chairman, said “Our village hall team has worked hard to make these refurbishments to our popular village hall and we’re most grateful to all our funders, and building contractors, that have made these improvements possible”. “We’re confident that the current users of the hall who have put up with the inevitable disruption of building works, will benefit from these improvements with even more being attracted to our newly ‘revitalised’ hall and anyone interested in hiring the hall should contact Dobie Davidson on 01387 710587”. “I should also like to take this opportunity to apologise to any of the hall neighbours who may have been inconvenienced by the building works”.
For more information on Kirkmahoe Parish Hall contact Trevor Hayward (Chairman) on 01387 711344 or Dobie Davidson (Secretary) on 01387 710587.
Lovely New Kitchen!