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Construction set to start at village hall

By Cornish Guardian  |  Posted: February 26, 2014

TEAM: Pictured are ten of the hall committee who have steered the new projected hall fundraising for the past few years, from left, Colin Wadey (treasurer), Kaye Wadey, Paul Greatorex, June Smyth, Pam Langley (forward bookings), Richard Woodcock, Janice Meekings, Barry Meekings, Linda Greatorex and Dave Langley (chairman).

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WORK is due to start to build a new £400,000 hall at the heart of a North Cornwall community.

Last year, Otterham and St Juliot Village Hall was awarded a Big Lottery Reaching Communities Buildings Grant of £418,379 to replace the old second-hand temporary social hall originally built in the late 1950s.

The hall had reached such a state of disrepair, holes had appeared in the rear wall.

Not only will the area get a new hall, but people will be able to carry on using the old one until five weeks before the new building is opened.

The new hall, which will be slightly larger, will be constructed alongside the existing one.

Hall committee chairman Dave Langley said there had been "a few hiccups" but now work was due to start.

Vanstones of Bude had been selected to construct the hall and work was due to take 28 weeks.

Mr Langley said: "We can use the old hall almost right up until the new one is completed."

The hall has been a focal point of many community activities during the past five decades. The many groups who meet there would have been left with nowhere to go had the hall been forced to close without a replacement being constructed.

The fundraising process for a new building started in 2007, with supporters contributing a further £56,500.

New activities lined up for the hall are badminton and short-mat bowling. Those interested in these activities are asked to visit the hall website at www.otterhamandstjuliothall.org

The hall, originally used as a military building at Dawlish, was moved to its present site in the late 1950s and had a small extension added during the 1980s.

A structural survey in 2008 concluded that even if substantial sums were spent on renovations the committee would still be left with a substandard building.

Mark Roberts, lead architect at The Bazeley Partnership, said last year: "We are working with local people to create a sustainable and functional building that will serve generations of people living in these communities."

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