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National Lottery Heritage Fund ensures South West Peak Village Hall/Community Centre Improvements

South West Peak Landscape Partnership

Thu 30 Sep 2021

Launched in 2017, the South West Peak Landscape Partnership is a group of organisations working together and with volunteers to restore, protect, and improve the landscape of the South West Peak area.

With the Peak District National Park as lead partner and the support of the National Lottery Heritage Fund this 5-year partnership (with benefits reaching far beyond that time) works with local communities to build stronger connections with the landscape and with each other.

As one of the key partners, Support Staffordshire leads the ‘Engaging Communities Project’ (one of 18 projects which make up the Scheme) which focuses on engaging all people who love the South West Peak; those who live or work in the area or folk who are just visiting.

So far, through our outstanding volunteers who make up our Community Grants Panel, 81 community grant applications have been reviewed, and 68 community grants awarded for 68 different community projects all delivered by passionate and committed volunteers and community groups.

Over the coming months we will be highlighting and celebrating as many of these projects as we can.

In this ninth ‘spotlight’ we feature 5 projects all of which have ensured the longevity of some important community buildings so that people and communities can continue to gather together across the South West Peak area.

Village Halls and other community buildings are essential in hosting and providing the facilities for a multitude of activities including dances, fitness and exercise classes, Bingo, whist drives, community groups meetings such as the Women's Institute, concerts, plays, movie nights, parties and other celebration events such as christenings and weddings and occasional charity fund-raising events. The ‘village hall’ also often acts as a base/refreshment station for occasional sporting events and are often used as polling stations.  

1. Meerbrook Village Hall: Installation of an internal sound system and Installation of a Modular Staging System.

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In 2019 two separate applications for funding were submitted and the team of volunteers who manage and take care of the Village Hall were successful is receiving the grant awards they asked for meaning they could install new sound and staging systems to make their already fantastic Village Hall even better!

“The project and the installation of the system has given a real ‘sense of community’ to the parish.” Arthur Wilson, Treasurer of Meerbrook Village Hall Committee

“We managed to get the staging system installed in time for a ‘One Night Only’ concert at which 40 performers and 100 audience members from Meerbrook and beyond enjoyed the evening. The staging system made it easier and safer than previously possible.” Keith Jones, Supporter

2. Swythamley and Heaton Community Centre: Building Improvements and Maintenance

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Swythamley and Heaton Community Centre is located in a beautiful part of the South West Peak with amazing views of the surrounding countryside.

This project (completed in early 2020) had 2 aims: a) To preserve the interior decoration and historic features of the 1902 school room making the Centre more attractive to potential hirers b) To improve the safety of the existing child friendly area for the use of children during events as well for the use of visitors to the area staying in local holiday lets or camping in the grounds.

“Everyone who is visits is really impressed by the appearance, both inside and out.” David Goodfellow, Chairman

To find out more about the centre go here: Swythamley and Heaton Community Centre website

To find the Centre on Facebook go here: Facebook - Swythamley and Heaton Community Centre

3. Warslow Village Hall: Village Hall Enhancement

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Four external window boxes, an instantaneous water heater (replacing a 35-year-old storage system) and fifteen lightweight folding trestle tables have all added to the sustainability of this Hall which services the wonderful community in and around Warslow.

For more information about Warslow Village Hall go here: Warslow Village Hall website

4. Onecote Village Hall: Redecoration of Village Hall

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Onecote Village Hall is situated alongside a conservation area. It was built in 1872 and was originally used as the village school. For the past 18 years the Committee and volunteers have raised funds, applied for grants and done everything possible to bring the Hall up to modern standards and meet the necessary regulations for meetings places. This project involved repainting the internal walls, ceilings and doors of this much loved and much needed venue.

For more information about Onecote Village Hall go here: Onecote Village Hall website 

5. Quarnford Memorial Hall/Flash Village Hall: Thermal Curtains

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Part of an overall refurbishment programme, the aim of this project was to increase the energy efficiency of the Hall by replacing the broken blinds with Thermal curtains.

All of the work has been done by volunteers and the addition of the curtains helped to minimise the use of oil by retaining the heat within the building whilst also creating a more welcoming internal environment.

Unsurprisingly, the Hall is at the centre for the community providing essential facilities and boasting glorious panoramic views of the South West Peak and beyond.

For more information about the Hall go here: Flash Village Hall website 

To find the Hall on Facebook go here: Facebook - Flash Village Hall 


To learn more about the South West Peak Landscape Partnership visit: South West Peak Landscape Partnership website