What do I want to do and why?
The existing hall built in 1922 is almost 100 years old, but beyond economic repair, and subsiding in the SW corner. It no longer meets the social and essential needs and requirements of its user groups and the local community (village pop approx. 700) It contains asbestos and has a host of other problems including mould, leaking roof, antiquated electrics, money meters and an inefficient heating system, problems with vermin, uneven floor and has no disabled or baby change facilities. It desperately needs to be replaced with a modern, economic, save and warm environment that can be used and enjoyed by everyone. Our old village hall has been much loved and used over the years, and holds so many memories, which is why it is so important to build a new one for the present and the future generations to create their own new memories.
Debden as a village is passionate about better lives for ALL the people in its local community and that's why I want to help the residents achieve their dream of a brand new village hall. I am part of a team of volunteers called Debden New Village Hall Group which was set up to project manage and fundraise for this project. The group supports the Debden Village Hall Trustees whose responsibility it is to provide a community facility for the village. My role is mainly to fundraise, but also to attend Parish Council and Village Hall Trust meetings. We are a strong team of enthusiastic and determined people with only one goal in mind.
What difference would a new hall make?
If we could have a warm, safe and lively community building to use on a daily basis, it will enhance life from a health and well being, to a social angle. Classes, sports, social and private events can be held here. It's impact will cross all generations: the young, families, special needs, ethnic minorities and the elderly. It will encourage and support our community to flourish, and to create new opportunities as well as continuing with the old ones. That is a very exciting concept indeed.
We want a sustainable development, one that will protect the environment, facilitating a growing and healthy community. The hall site sits close to an open rural space, in the heart of the village, and so we can make the most of this in its design.
Our vision is a building that is light, airy, spacious and modern, designed to sit within its rural setting and on the edge of Debden Recreation Ground, adjacent to the village shop, children’s play area, football pitch, tennis courts and Debden Primary School. It will completely regenerate the heart of the village, both for the community as well aesthetically.
We have raised approx £303,000 in the last 4 years, just under half way as we need £720,000 to complete the project. This has been achieved through applying for grants, local events such as jumble sale, gift fairs, quiz and dance shows. Some funding was donated through 'Buy-A-Brick' and personal donations. We have initial designs from our appointed architect and one one two preliminary surveys have already been carried out. We held an extensive programme of community consultation and built a design brief from its findings.
A project of this size needs to be done in phases, almost like baby steps, as the infrastructure needs to be laid out before the build starts. Architects fees alone can range from £25,000 to £65,000 on a project of this size from initial concept, planning to completion of build.
We have entered the Calor Rural Fund so we can raise money for water installation services. If we win £5000 we still need a further £3,500 to complete this task.
We need your support so please help us raise these funds as a step closer to achieving our dream.