Responses to New Village Hall consultation – 1-31 October 2018

These responses will be considered by the Infrastructure Development Planning subcommittee of
the Parish Council. They will report their findings / recommended actions to the PC.

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Where is the footprint of the new Village Hall going to be?
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You may already have this in your plan, but thinking about the hall being booked for a wedding
reception it will be more appealing if you have a long rail each side of the ceiling to enable
bunting/lights to be hung across.
Also the possibility of a small fenced piece of garden area for the use of the hall only would be good.
(Take a look at Stanton Harcourt Village Hall facilities).
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Thank you – and the rest of the IDP team – for the helpful paper on the outline Architect’s Brief. My
comments are set out below.

Main Hall
I like the proposals for a mixed use for the hall.
I agree that a modular stage would be preferable to a fixed one.
I like the proposals for Wi-Fi, audio facilities with hearing loop, projection facilities and white wall
screen.
Storage space for equipment, chairs, tables, etc. is essential.
I have concerns about the increased capacity of the hall – from, I think, currently 100 people to the
proposed 180 – see below Parking and access to the hall.

Entrance Hall
I like the proposal for a comfortable assembly space with toilet and cloakroom facilities, with direct
access to the main hall and space for notices.
I think it is essential that this is a draught-free lobby with access for wheelchairs and storage for push
chairs.
I like the idea of a permanent casual seating area, although thought might need to be given as to how
this might be used – legitimate visitors or people just hanging around?
Consideration should be given to the design of the cloakroom – should it be free access – ie. people
come and hang up coats, leave belongings, or should it have secure lockers?
Nappy changing facilities are essential – supported by the necessary cleaning, waste disposal and
maintenance of the facilities – but see also disabled facilities below.

Disabled facilities – there is a move towards providing much more appropriate facilities for disabled
people – and children. As children with disabilities get older, if they are incontinent the “baby”
changing facilities provided in many places are completely inadequate. Imagine trying to lay a 5, 6, 7
year old and older child on a relatively flimsy shelf to change him or her. Imagine also the alternative
of laying that child on the floor of the toilet. And, of course, it doesn’t just apply to
children. Disabled toilet facilities are often completely inadequate for adults too.

Can I refer you to Changing Places for more detailed information, which should be passed on to the architect? http://www.changing-places.org/

Lounge/meeting room(s)
I like the proposal for the lounge/meeting room(s).
Facilities for making a hot drink would be useful.
It might be necessary to provide this/these room(s) with their own storage for crockery, etc.
A separate sink for washing up and getting water for the kettle would be useful.

Small hall/fitness studio
This sounds good, but I have some concerns about the number of people using the hall. See
below Parking and access to the hall.

Changing facilities
I have no particular comments to add, other than I agree that there should be two separate changing
areas. “Policing” the careful and considerate use of these will be the main issue.
I think the Changing Places requirements for an accessible multi-use toilet should apply here too, but
recognise the cost implications.

Kitchen/Bar
The proposals all sound good.
Wall units as well as base units, might be useful.
Easy access to waste disposal is essential. I don’t know whether, at some stage in the future, there
will be a requirement to separate recyclable waste. Consideration should be given to this.

Toilets
I assume that the toilets are in addition to those mentioned elsewhere – entrance hall, changing
facilities.
Even so, I wonder whether 3 female toilets will be sufficient, particularly if the capacity of the hall
goes to 180 people.

Utility room
Yes, essential.

Terrace
I like this idea.
Consideration could be given to how internal furniture – chairs, tables – might be used if taken
outside.

Location of the hall
The only comment I have is that very careful consultation should be had with the people who live in
Middletown adjacent to the hall.

Building method
In addition to construction cost economies, the architect should be instructed to consider the day-to-day
and longer term maintenance of the building. The cost and maintenance of heating the
building needs to come into this, too. Consideration needs to be given to the eventual replacement
of certain components or elements of the building.

Might the Village Hall Management Committee need to set up some kind of sinking fund?
The architect will be familiar with the questions…
“How will it be used?”
“How long will it last?”
“How will it be cleaned?”
“How will be replaced?”
“How will it be reached?”

Parking and access
My concerns
I haven’t counted them, but would guess that the current number of parking spaces including
disabled spaces is probably around 40. For certain events, this is not enough for current needs. If
the capacity of the hall rises to 180, and we averaged, say, 3 people per car, this would mean we’d
probably need another 20-25 spaces. It might be possible to accommodate these on the site of the
existing village hall once it is demolished.
The main concern for me though is the number of cars – and people – that might be accessing the
hall on a regular basis – driving along the very narrow, badly maintained, access lane past people’s
homes. An increased level of traffic along there, as well as through Middletown itself, might become
a real nuisance to residents.
With the very attractive facilities being proposed it is possible that more people will be attracted to
use the hall both from within and outside the village. Those from outside the village may, and I
stress may, not be as considerate as we would like them to be when they have no involvement with
or interest in the village.
Thank you again for all the work you’ve all done on producing this proposal. I hope my comments
are useful.
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Objections to building of New Village Hall
I am writing with reference to the Consultation document contained in the October 2018 Hailey
Herald.
It covers a lot of detail on what a new Village Hall might contain, but I would like to focus primarily
on the penultimate paragraph in that document entitled “Location of the Hall”. I was at the Annual
AGM in April when at the monthly PC meeting held just before the AGM it was decided by
Councillors to build a new Village Hall rather than refurbish the old. At the AGM the audience was
asked if they had any questions on the proposed development.
I asked two questions, the first being had any other sites been considered in the village, and secondly
if the present location were used again, how would it be accessed as the current building was built in
the early 1960’s when most people walked, cycled or used public transport, but not many owned
cars. The current access is no more than 10 to 12 feet across at its widest point.
On both occasions the PC Chairman replied that no other locations had been considered. I asked if
it was possible for the Parish Council to make enquiries with Oxfordshire County Council as to
whether the much under used “School Hall” at Hailey Primary School could be used as the new
Village Hall as it certainly has the capacity to do so. Equally, if the School sports field could be
considered as the new Recreation ground, as the size of this field could easily encompass a full- sized
football field, as well as providing facilities for the schoolchildren.
Additional provision of changing facilities /sports pavilion might also be considered on this site.
Most importantly though, access to the School site is off the main road through Hailey, with existing
parking, which again could be extended, as there is enough room to do so.
However, when pressed about access to a new Hall on the existing site he suggested that this could
be dealt with by use of a one way system, ie traffic coming in through the present road/lane and
exiting via Church Lane, which currently is a pot holed track culminating in a blind bend on an
increasingly busy main road!
In my view the decision to build a new Village Hall appears to have been taken entirely as a result of
a general survey when the Village Neighbourhood Plan was being compiled. I have seen no feasibility
study carried out on either site, access, or indeed whether there is real need for a new hall at all.
No figures, although they obviously exist, have been published to show how often the present Hall is
used, and whether this use is improving or in decline.
If it is in decline, why would you build a new Hall, where access is not improved on that of fifty years
ago, thus ensuring the Hall might be used more often?
I would contend that before the Consultation document is considered that considerably more work
is done, and published, on other potential sites and further enquiries made.
If this were a third party making this application, I believe the Parish Council would refuse the
application on access alone, as it surely does not meet criteria used to adjudicate on other similar
applications.
I would ask that you please consider other options and explore their potential, before committing to
a project that as yet has not been publicly proven is required, and if built would be compounding an
access error made over 50 years ago, and thus making any new build, a difficult place place to visit,
park and enjoy.

To summarise;
Would Hailey Parish Council please explain publicly, in detail, if it is felt necessary to build a new
Village Hall at the current location, how they will improve access both in and out of the site, and
what routes they would use to facilitate this improved access.

GALK
5th November 2018

 

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