The New Village Hall

Title

The New Village Hall

Subject

Photographs L - R, T - B :-

1. The village hall was a long time coming, the original committee was formed in 1937 but it could not be afforded until 1954, here the first turf is turned :

The photograph includes: James Gardiner, Hazel Couldrey, Mrs G. Short, Mrs K. Weare, Harry Couldrey, Sir Robert and Lady Perkins, Lewis, Dacre and Brian Gardiner, William and Eve Simmonds, Charles Weston, Reginald, Harry and Austin Gardiner, Anthony Liddiatt, Mrs P. Robbins, Mr R. Dangerfield, Mrs J. Robbins

2. The village hall was opened on the 19th November 1954 by the Duke of Beaufort, Lord Lieutenant of the County.

Some of those seen here are Sir Robert and Lady Perkins, Mr William Simmonds, Mr and Mrs P. Barker, Mr & Mrs C. Dean and their daughter.

3. Opening Night at the new Village Hall, L - R : William Simmonds, Ellie Hook, Austin Gardiner, Dacre Gardiner

4. The new Village Hall before it was extended

5 -7. Newspaper Cuttings

Description

In 1937, three residents of Far Oakridge formed the Oakridge Village Hall Trust and a year later Mrs Alice Rothenstein donated the land on which the hall now stands, to be held in trust by charity commissioners on behalf of the inhabitants of the hamlets of Oakridge Lynch, Far Oakridge. Tunley, Waterlane and Bournes Green.

On 1 April 1941, the official trust deed was sealed by the charity commissioners with the object of providing a village hall for the bene¬fit of the inhabitants of the five hamlets, without distinction between sex or political or other opinions.

At this time, despite regular fund-raising, there was insufficient money to construct a hall, and this would not have been possible in any event because of the Second World War. After the war, when building was permitted, there was still insufficient money, and the committee set about gathering more funds.

In 1954, enough money had been collected to build to a design provided free of charge by Mr Hamp. The hall was erected and opened on 19 November 1954 by the Duke of Beaufort, Lord Lieutenant of the County. This was looked upon as a most important occasion and the lane leading from the common down to the hall was resurfaced with tarmac for the first time.

The hall was packed for the opening ceremony. Now, more funds were required because of the price increase in materials to build the hall. Austin Gardier recalled his own contribution to this as part of the village orchestra: 'Mr John Dangerfield, a wonderful man, Hilda's son, was secretary. We raised money for the Village Hall Fund and gave our services free, playing every Friday night when there was a Whist Drive and Dance. Wednesday night was for learners. We charged ten bob a night just to pay for our music copies. The first year we raised £144.00.

Since the opening of the hall, many community events have been held there: coffee mornings, jumble sales, dances and auctions. In addition, the Oakridge Dramatic Society has been revived. John Poole and his wife Betty put on numerous plays and pantomimes, including Cinderella and Robin Hood and the Tunley Witches often with full houses for each performance. After John Poole and Betty left Oakridge, David Battison continued with the dramatic society and produced many excellent plays over the years. One play that was produced by Christine Gaut was staged in the gardens of Lyday House, it was called Outside Edge. Mr Peter Lang, who owned Lyday, paid for the outdoor stage and gave it to the parish for future productions.

Oakridge was always, and still is, a very musical and theatrical village. The Oakridge Flower Show and Fete has always been an excellent community gathering. For many years it was held on the village and church greens.

In July 1979 a fete was held at Waterlane House, and was organised by Mrs Owen, owner of Waterlane House, Mary Hunt, Pat Carrick and many other helpers. It was a great success and raised £1,000, which was a great deal of money in those days.

In more recent times the show has been held on the pleasure ground, organised by the fete committee. It is delightful to see villagers, young and old, together enjoying the stalls and games, swing boats, ice cream and all the produce, flowers and other entries in the various competitions.

Source

Oakridge History Group

Date

1954

Contributor

Alison Gardiner

Relation

Gloucestershire Archives holds the following records :

1. Gloucestershire Community Council correspondence regarding the purchase, buiding and extending of Valliage Halls, 1938 - 1958, ref. D3168/4/7/58

Files

The village hall was a long time coming, the original committee was formed in 1937 but it could not be afforded until 1954, here the first turf is turned :<br />
<br />
The photograph includes: James Gardiner, Hazel Couldrey, Mrs G. Short, Mrs K. Weare, Harry Couldrey, Sir Robert and Lady Perkins, Lewis, Dacre and Brian Gardiner, William and Eve Simmonds, Charles Weston, Reginald, Harry and Austin Gardiner, Anthony Liddiatt, Mrs P. Robbins, Mr R. Dangerfield, Mrs J. Robbins<br />
The village hall was opened on the 19th November 1954 by the Duke of Beaufort, Lord Lieutenant of the County. <br />
<br />
Some of those seen here are Sir Robert and Lady Perkins, Mr William Simmonds, Mr and Mrs P. Barker, Mr & Mrs C. Dean and their daughter.
Opening Night at the new Village Hall, L - R : William Simmonds, Ellie Hook, Austin Gardiner, Dacre Gardiner
The new Village Hall before it was extended<br />
Newspaper Cutting
Newspaper Cutting
Newspaper Cutting

Citation

“The New Village Hall,” Oakridge Community Archives, accessed August 20, 2017, http://oakridgecommunityarchives.org/items/show/139.

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