Larger, accessible space now open in West Acton
St Martin’s West Acton Parish Hall "Caring for the Community" renovation project is now complete.
The Parish Hall, originally built in 1963, was already used extensively by many local community groups including Brownies and Girl Guides, ballroom dancing, martial arts clubs, ballet lessons, Pilates, youth groups and choir rehearsals. However, it was in desperate need of modernisation to make it even more useful for the community and accessible to more groups, including those with disabilities.
The project, which was awarded funding of £34,000 in June 2019 under Biffa Award’s Community Buildings theme, has made the hall about 20% larger, having removed the old, redundant stage – allowing all users more space for their activities. The Biffa Award, a multi-million pound fund that awards grants to community and environmental projects across the UK, as part of the Landfill Communities Fund.
The entrance lobby has been upgraded as well and now has fully accessible, step-free access and has been re-glazed with energy efficient safety doors and windows.
The work had to be undertaken in phases during school holidays to accommodate the Montessori School that uses the hall during term time, and was completed in February 2020. St. Martin’s is hoping to have a big open day event to celebrate once we are out of lockdown.
Work in progress
The Vicar of St Martin’s, Rev Julia Palmer said, “The completion of the renovation, along with an earlier project in 2018 that renovated the kitchen area; means our hall is now an amazing space that can be used for so many different activities and events, and we’re really excited about reaching out and making a difference in our local community.”
Mrs Jennifer Dudley Leader 4th Acton Brownies and Guides, “The hall feels really transformed, and gives the girls much more space for all our activities and games. They love it!”
Michael, an instructor at Kenshukai Karate said “In terms of improvements, the added space from the stage removal has been of great benefit to our training sessions, the new varnished flooring is a huge improvement, given we train bare-footed, to both reduce the risk of splinters and give improved grip. The whole place feels brightened. The renovations have been brilliant”
Ann Tierney from Questors Choir said “Questors Choir really appreciates the church hall improvements. There is much more room for our increasing number of members, and more flexibility in how we arrange ourselves for rehearsals. The storage of the chairs at ground level is a huge improvement and our new storage space is great too – thank you!”
Rachel Maidment, Biffa Award Grants Manager, said, “It is fantastic to see what a difference the Biffa Award grant has made at St Martin’s Church Hall, not only in providing a much needed upgrade to its facilities, but also creating more usable space for users of the hall. Supporting this project will ensure the community has a fit for purpose building to use for years to come.”
August 11, 2020