Modernisation Project (formerly New Build)

Because of the coronavirus pandemic our priorities have changed.  We see little prospect of finding the finance to rebuild the Hall within the next few years, so we have now shifted our focus towards refurbishing the Village Hall instead.  

MODERNISATION BULLETIN November 2021 – What’s the latest?

I know, there hasn’t been a Bulletin for a few months. It doesn’t mean that the project has stalled, or anything like that. We’ve been busy, that’s all, and could honestly do with a helping hand. How about you? Now would be a very good time to get involved with this scheme.


So, what stage has the modernisation programme reached?

  • We are getting close to the end of the first phase of the project. Much of the essential background work has been completed, such as agreed Terms of Reference, the setting up of bank accounts and signatories, blah, blah, blah, but it had to be done.
  • We are clear from survey of residents and users on how they would like a refurbished Village Hall to look and are working towards that goal.
  • We have instructed G.C. Robertson & Associates of Woodbridge to start the structural survey process. Their work, to make architectural drawings of the Hall and determine the strength of the walls, is underway as I write this. We shall also employ another surveyor shortly after Christmas to report on the roofs, windows, drains, etc.
  • A few of our team have attended a recent Green Energy event at Wherstead to gather more information about installing solar panels, heat pumps, etc.
  • We have been developing an outline plan of changes to the existing Village Hall we believe would be beneficial. Now we are trying to find out if they are feasible.
  • We have recently approved the installation of Wi-Fi in the Hall and are currently talking with suppliers.
  • We are currently organising the Autumn Craft Fair to be held in the Village Hall from 10.00am to 3.00pm on Saturday 27th November as a fundraiser..

It actually sounds encouraging.

  • Yes, we are beginning to make real practical progress. Our next steps, in the early Spring, will be to engage an architect in making drawings and estimates for us. Exciting, eh? When we have those we shall organise a public exhibition….
  • …but we need more members on our Modernisation team. If that could be you, you would be very welcome. Please contact…

Pete Holden
Modernisation Steering Group (01728) 747229

MODERNISATION BULLETIN July 2021 – What’s happened so far?

We made some improvements during the lockdown period: –

  • We fixed the flat roofs, so they no longer leak!
  • The whole Village Hall has been repainted inside. It now looks fresher and brighter.
  • An electric hot water system now feeds all the basins in our toilets.

That sounds good, but didn’t you also send out a questionnaire?

Yes we did, to everyone in Wickham Market, Pettistree and Loudham, and in general you want:

  • A modern, efficient, Village Hall that where possible uses renewable technologies.
  • Excellent soundproofing between the Main Hall and the Committee Room.
  • More storage, both for Hall furniture, and for use by regular clubs.
  • A more relaxing, accessible, and better equipped bar area.
  • A bright, warm, and welcoming entrance with much better disabled access.
  • A new pitched roof over the whole Hall if possible.
  • The pebbledash rendering outside stripped off and replace with modern cladding.
  • The car park to be given designated bays for Village Hall use, and a bike/buggy shed.

What are the next steps?

  • Currently we are considering making some internal changes to make better use of the space we already have in the Village Hall.
  • First we need a structural survey. We are now asking three engineers for estimates before we engage the best one.

How much is the Modernisation all going to cost?

  • Not sure, but likely to amount to several hundred thousand pounds.
  • Fortunately we already have just over £96,000 in our reserves. That’ll help, but….
  • We will have to apply for grants but also need to gather more funds ourselves. So we are starting up an Events Team to plan a programme of regular events in the Village.
  • If you would like to join this Team please contact: 

Pete Holden
Modernisation Steering Group (01728) 747229