newbiggin village hall
providing a creative rural environment
event, meeting and conference facilities
A village hall for Newbiggin was first proposed in 1946, but it was not until 1956 that sufficient funds were raised to begin construction. The original hall was built by a local contractor, Jos Watson, on land donated by Harrison's Limeworks. It cost the princely sum of £3,000. The opening, on 26th April, was carried out by Mr and Mrs J Harrison of Inglewood.
The original building had brick footings to the one meter level, then cedar planking above. The internal walls were just hardboard and the dance floor was Tasmanian oak.
The hall was always a popular venue. Dances were held every Saturday night and it was not unusual for over three hundred to attend. The organisers provided a bus (from Titteringtons of Blencowe – still running today) to ferry dancers to and from the surrounding villages. The old accounts book shows that the most popular band was The Modernaires. Refreshments provided at the dances consisted of nothing stronger than minerals and crisps! The band got their supper thrown in.
The popularity of the hall was such that there was soon a demand for more space and a kitchen. In 1961 it was extended to provide a stage, a kitchen and a supper room. This extension was opened by the local MP, Willie Whitelaw (photo left, second from the right).
However, by 2002 the hall was beginning to look its age. It had started to leak. It was un-
The first successful grant application was to Cumbria Waste Management Environment Trust. The award stipulated that the new Hall should aim to meet or exceed the current targets for thermal efficiency and low-
Over the next three years the trustees were delighted to receive a constant stream of grants and loans, and by the beginning of 2010 had reached their funding target (£450,000), finalised the architectural drawings and appointed a contractor. Demolition of the old hall began in February (photo, right.) The new building was handed over to the trustees on November 19th, 2010. No formal opening ceremony took place, but the whole village came to an opening party.
The new hall was constructed to extremely high standards of insulation. Even in the coldest weather the heat losses from the hall are very small, so it is always warm.
The entire heating requirements are supplied by a ground-
The roof of the hall hosts an array of 33 photo-