Forres Town Hall needs YOUR help!

by Forres Area Community Trust in Forres, Moray, United Kingdom

Forres Town Hall needs YOUR help!

Total raised £3,433

raised so far

+ est. £752.50 Gift Aid



During Phase 1 of the Redevelopment Project we have found issues with structural supports that need to be repaired or replaced immediately.

by Forres Area Community Trust in Forres, Moray, United Kingdom

Forres Town Hall is YOUR Town Hall.

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Forres Area Community Trust (FACT) own and run Forres Town Hall for the community and to support local groups who use the building.

FACT needs help to raise extra money to help pay for additional repairs that are needed for Phase 1 of the Forres Town Hall Redevelopment Project.

FACT have uncovered problems while working on Phase 1 of the Forres Town Hall Redevelopment Project and we need YOUR help to raise additional funds.

We have found that structural supports need major repair or replacement and this was not anticipated in Phase 1 of the Forres Town Hall Redevelopment Project despite significant survey work being completed before the start of this Phase.

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Phase 1 is the start of an ambitious £5 million Project to refurbish and redevelop Forres Town Hall to make it fit for purpose for the whole community.

We will need more than £20,000 as quickly as possible to help repair or replace a beam that is rotten and to add extra supporting columns to hold the beam securely in place. If there are any funds left over after paying for this additional work to be completed, then we will put them towards the next Phase of the Development Project which we anticipate being the repair or replacement of the single glazed windows.  

Please help us to keep Forres Town Hall open to the community by making a donation to support this vital Project.

All donations will be gratefully received and if you are not able to donate at this time, please share our Fundraising Campaign as this helps us immensely.

✔ If you are a Taxpayer, please remember to tick the Gift Aid box so that we can claim an extra 25% from HMRC. 

✔ Ticking the box will not cost you anything extra.



If you would like to have your donation to the Forres Town Hall Redevelopment Project acknowledged, then your name can be added to the:

FACT Slide Show on the TV Screen in the Foyer.

  • If you DO NOT want your name added to the FACT Slide Show then please make your donation anonymously
  • If you add your name to your donation, then we will add your name as it appears via the Crowdfunder Page to the FACT Slide Show
  • If you would like your name in the FACT Slide Show and you have donated anonymously OR you would like a different name used (eg. Liz instead of Elizabeth) then please email [email protected] and we can sort that out for you


Background  re. Forres Area Community Trust (FACT) and Forres Town Hall

FACT took over the running of Forres Town Hall in 2018 after Moray Council closed the building in 2017 due to council budget cuts. In 2021, FACT bought the building via a Community Asset Transfer thanks to a grant from the Scottish Land Fund so that the building could remain a focal point for the community in the Forres Area. Since then we have developed a number of strategies to raise funds for the Forres Town Hall Redevelopment Project.

The Forres Town Hall Redevelopment Project - how we got to this stage

The current estimate for the total Redevelopment Project is now £5 million to make all areas of the building fully accessible to every member of our community and to reduce the running costs which will be done in phases as funding is raised through Grant Applications as well as direct fundraising.

FACT is absolutely delighted that we have been able to raise £550,000 through Grants so that we were able to start Phase 1 in January 2024. This is the first stage of the long awaited renovation and repair works at Forres Town Hall and will help to ensure the sustainability of the building now and for future generations. Representatives of the different organisations who have awarded Grants to FACT as part of Phase 1 were invited to take part in a Hard Hat Tour and see for themselves how the Funds are being used and they can be seen in this photograph:                          


Some of the Funders who have supported the Redevelopment Project so far being shown around the roof area of Forres Town Hall by FACT and LTM.

Phase 1 of the Forres Town Hall Redevelopment Project

This funding will also enable us to finally install the 495 rolls of wool insulation into the roof cavity which was purchased last year via the Just Transition Participatory Budgeting Process which was administered by Money for Moray and tsiMORAY.  

We have also been supported by local firm, AJ Engineering and Construction, who stored half of the rolls of Insulation while we raised the additional funds to complete the work on the roof. 

The Insulation has now been moved to Forres Town Hall in readiness for it being installed:


We would have also not got to this stage without the support from the Architectural Heritage Fund, the Berry Burn Community Fund and Development Trusts Association Scotland - Green Shoots Fund for their support to fund the costs of preparation and survey work.

Challenges with Phase 1 of the Forres Town Hall Redevelopment Project.

We are fortunate to have the contractors, LTM Group - Laing Traditional Masonry Ltd, working on Phase 1 of the Forres Town Hall Redevelopment Project along with the design team, who are all skilled in conservation projects. 

Despite extensive surveys being carried out before we started Phase 1 we have uncovered additional issues while undertaking the works to the front of the Town Hall. We knew that this area had some dry rot however it has now become apparent that the dry rot is much more extensive than originally thought and is causing concern about the impact on the structure of the building.

This will incur huge extra costs as the beam, which is over 17 metres long, spans the whole of the front of the building and currently is only supported on two timber columns. 

Here you can see one of the timber columns which has been stripped back and so now we can see the full extent of the damage:



 Temporary additional supports will be required to be  installed and works cannot continue on the roof above until the repairs or replacement structural work is complete which causes concern about how we will pay for these unexpected extra costs.

We need YOUR help:

These additional works were not anticipated in Phase 1 and we now need to raise extra funds to allow this work to be completed as soon as possible. 

  • We need over £20,000 to help pay for this essential additional dry rot treatment and structural work.

  • Please help us to keep Forres Town Hall open to the community by making a donation to support this vital Project.

Forres Town Hall - through the ages

Originally the Hall was built in 1791 by the Freemasons of Lodge St Lawrence. It has been a focal point for the whole community since the building was rebuilt on the same site between 1827 - 1829. 

In 1855 Mechanics Institute bought the Hall from the Lodge of St Lawrence and in 1881 further extensions were added and in 1901 the Hall was refronted with the addition of classical columns topped by the balustrade as well as the fan windows.

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Following plans of Alexander Macdonald, the Hall was improved in 1936 and his experience in designing cinemas is evident in the Main Hall. The Gallery that ran around the Main Hall, which was supported by iron pillars, was replaced by the sloping Balcony that can be seen today.

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Through the years Forres Town Hall  has been an Auxiliary Hospital during the First World War and it became Forres Town Hall between the 2 World Wars. 

The Gallery and the iron pillars can also be seen in these photos.

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It has served as a meeting space and venue for local dances as well as concerts. 

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The Silver Beatles, which included George Harrison, John Lennon and Paul McCartney in the line up, played on the stage in support of Johnny Gently in May 1960.

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Since FACT took over the running of Forres Town Hall in 2018 we have been complimented with how much busier and more welcoming the space has become. 

A great place to hire for a birthday party or concert or both!

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FACT have organised a variety of Courses and Classes for all age ranges within the Community:

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Storytelling for the Under 5s and Singing for Enjoyment for 18 - 80 year olds.Cooking Demonstrations at the Family Social Club, Gentle Seated Exercise plus Digital Support from Forres Online.

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Digital Support from Forres Online, Gentle Seated Exercise and Cooking Demonstrations at the Family Social Club.

We want to continue to provide a hall that is available for a wide variety of community groups and organisations and want to redevelop the building to suit the needs of everyone who wants to use it.

That’s why we need your help to keep YOUR Town Hall open for YOU.

All donations will be gratefully received and if you are not able to donate at this time, please share our Fundraising Campaign with others as this helps us immensely.

✔  If you are a Taxpayer, please remember to tick the Gift Aid box so that we can claim an extra 25% from HMRC.

✔ Ticking the box will not cost you anything extra.


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