When lockdown measures were first introduced in March, community facilities such as village halls had to close their doors to all users, resulting in the immediate loss of income from our various hirers.
Recently, guidelines were published covering the re-opening of community facilities requiring users to observe a number of protocols such as the need to wash hands or use sanitiser on arrival (and regularly during occupation), clean door handles, tables, chairs, sinks, toilets, worktops on arrival and departure, take turns to use confined spaces such as corridors, kitchens and toilets, observe social distancing on arrival, during occupation and leaving – plus wearing face coverings on entry to and exit from the building and during occupancy unless covered under a reasonable excuse, e.g. if attending a gym class, undertaking an activity where it impacts ability or if removing a face covering
temporarily to eat and drink something. Social distancing requirements have also led to our having to reduce the attendance capacity to 30 persons in the main hall and to 8 in the Sydney Room.
On the understanding that the organisers of a particular group or activity wishing to hire the hall undertake to attend to the required cleaning regime (BPC could not possibly clean all surfaces at the hall between each hire) and “police” the social distancing and face covering aspects, it was decided to invite our regular users to return to the hall if desired. For the last two or three weeks, we have welcomed the Matt Fiddes Martial Arts Class on Tuesdays and this has proved to be a very satisfactory pilot exercise. As we move into September, the Boat House Ballet School returns on 2nd September, the Martletts Short Mat Bowlers
resume operations on the 7th and Barry and Sue Bird will holding the Bury and Pulborough Dance Group Sessions again on Thursdays and Fridays from the 24th.
Consequently, we now have regular bookings for each weekday evening and are once again able to rely upon the resultant income to keep the hall operating for the benefit of residents.
Please note that the village hall car park is intended for users of the hall, so now it has re-opened, could residents who have been parking there (other than those tenants of Squires Cottages who are allocated one space) please arrange to park elsewhere to avoid causing difficulties for hall users. Your co-operation on this issue is much appreciated.
Unfortunately, the COVID-19 measures we would need to follow in the hall do not really lend themselves to the resumption of such events as the monthly coffee mornings or the horticultural society’s plant sales and flower shows but rest assured that the organisers concerned are keen to get these up and running again once it is deemed safe to do so.