Make Ashingdon and East Hawkwell Memorial Hall Great Again

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During the 1980’s & 1990’s Ashingdon Memorial Hall was a shining example of a Charitable Gift
donated to the local community for the benefit of everyone, (it is a Registered Charity with the Charity
Commission). During this Golden Period the Charity/Hall was Supremely managed by Trustees and an
Active Committee who ensured it maintained the highest of standards, making it ‘The Choice Venue’ for
many Public and Private Functions.
However, over the past decade or more, the Hall/Charity has been somewhat neglected, the level of
interest and commitment shown by the current Trustees woefully inadequate. The fabric of the building is
at an all-time low, the kitchen facilities bordering on ‘unusable’, the equipment (chairs, tables, etc.) both
dangerous and in short supply, the toilets and general floors potentially unsafe and unhealthy, indeed,
everything has suffered to a point where no ‘quality’ bookings are possible (no one would want a wedding
or special function as the cleanliness and facilities are just not good enough). It even lacks any form of
credible website, a MUST for promoting local venues, and never advertises. Sadly, the decline in quality
bookings (especially at weekends) has led to a severe shortage of income, which is reflected in the lack of
funds available to address the multitude of problems the Charity/Hall now faces.
Thankfully, there remain a few Committee Members who are determined to see the Charity/Hall
return to its glory days, and they are now trying to Ring the Changes. They have been able to make some
improvements over the past 12 months, the inside of the main hall was redecorated with Free Labour
provided by the KAOS youth club, and Free Paint supplied by Dulux, but sadly this was met with
derogatory comments by Trustees, ‘Don’t see what was wrong with the original Décor, and don’t like the
new colour (Magnolia)’. Every suggestion for improvements is met with ‘we don’t have the funds’, and yet
the offer of a ‘personal loan’ by one of the hall users to help address the toilets/flooring has so far been
ignored.
This ‘Level of Negativity’ has underlined the need for change so one of the User Group
Representatives, Mr Darren Parsons founder of KAOS Youth Club, himself a Hall Committee Member, has
suggested to the Trustees that they step aside and allow fresh blood with fresh ideas and energy to move
things forward. This attempt to make changes for the benefit of the Charity/Hall has so far been ignored,
so this Petition has been organised to hopefully show the current Trustees the level of disappointment and
dissatisfaction with their level of competence.
Ashingdon, Rochford, Hockley, Hawkwell, Stambridge, Canewdon, South Fambridge, etc. and all
local surrounding areas, the “local community”, deserve to have the best facilities possible, and the
Memorial Hall could easily fulfil this role with the right support and drive. We therefore ask you all, as local
residents and/or users, to support our Petition with a signature, to hopefully restore the Charity/Hall to its
rightful position. Without these proposed changes, it is quite conceivable that the Charity/Hall could, given
the current state of affairs, face closure as a ‘financially unviable venue’ in the not-too-distant future.



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