Wrestlingworth & Cockayne Hatley Parish Council

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The initiative for a public hall for the village was first proposed following the end of the First World War. A sum of over £200 was collected over the years ( about £13 000 in today’s money) and in 1936 proposals were put forward to build a Reading room to replace ‘The Hut’ in Butchers Lane. However, many parishioners and the Parish Council felt there was the prospect of providing a substantial multi use Village hall which would benefit more of the community. Costs for this were estimated at £600 and following the donation of land in Church Lane by the Randalls, in 1937, a committee was formed from representatives of 10 village organisations to take the plans forward.

Further funds were raised through grants and events throughout 1938 and 1939 and the Memorial hall was officially opened on 25th March 1940. During the war years the hall was used as a social centre and canteen for troops billeted at The Old Rectory. At the end of the war the sprung wood floor was repaired the hall was then used as the school canteen. In 1965 the old coal fired boiler was replaced with an oil fired boiler, which required a bank loan to cover the £300 cost. To help funds, the hall committee started a ‘Village Day’ fete in 1969, which was an annual event through to 2006.

Other regular fundraising events organised by the Hall committee were Barn Dances, New Years’ eve parties and Bistros and Horse race nights, which over the years raised substantial sums of money, to enable the hall to be maintained and improved to provide the excellent facilities we now all enjoy.                                                                                Next>