Creating a safe community space in Torthorwald
Torthorwald Hall Association was awarded £5,000 from the Annandale and Nithsdale Community Benefit Company (ANCBC) to upgrade the village hall, making it safe for the community.
Annandale and Nithsdale Community Benefit Company (ANCBC) supports a wide range of charitable activities providing benefit to 42 community council areas across Annandale, Nithsdale and Eskdale.
The Torthorwald Hall Association manages and promotes the use of Torthorwald Village Hall for the benefit of the local and the wider community. Before the covid pandemic, it facilitated and hosted a wide variety of activities throughout the year including carpet bowling, bingo nights, quiz nights, supper/dance nights, children's/other parties, ladies nights, polling station, Community Council meetings and its own organised events, and other community group events in the adjacent village field.
The Association also supported local businesses who used the hall for events that reflected community objectives including Tai Chi, drum circle, yoga, dog agility and more.
Since the relaxation of restrictions it has been busy restarting many of the above events and activities and adding some new ones such as wreath making (including afternoon tea) and a family movie night.
The hall hosts many local events and so the need for the work to remove asbestos contaminated artex on the walls to address the potential safety risks for its users was crucial.
Given the age and nature of the plasterwork on the walls, including some areas of wattle and daub, the amount of actual plasterwork that had to be removed ended up being significantly more than anticipated! This meant that the Association needed to raise extra funds to cover the costs of the extra work needed. The Nicholson Endowment Trustees offered to bridge the funding gap, in addition to their original support.
Torthorwald Hall Association describe how the community came together to help.
"We enlisted the experts in the community to select the colour scheme - the young Mum's group. Perfect! With the colour palette agreed upon quotes for painting the upper walls and ceiling were requested, given the health and safety issues involved in working at height. It was agreed that community members would be invited to join us to paint the lower sections of the walls and lobby. Community members came to complete the task over the following month giving up over 120 hours of their time to complete the transformation."
"Throughout the works, one of the added benefits we had was having an architect within the community with a particular interest in old buildings who gave his time to advise us and the contractors regarding improvements that could be made to the ventilation and airflows through the hall to help prevent future dampness occurring. A real bonus!"
Torthorwald Hall Association is now looking at the next project the community wishes it to undertake which is refurbishing the kitchen area.