14th Feb 2019

Congratulations to Gainford Village Hall who have recently been successful in achieving the Hallmark 1 quality standard award.

The volunteer members of the management committee received their Hallmark 1 certificate in a presentation ceremony attended by Helen Brown from Durham Community Action who operate the scheme across County Durham on behalf of Action with Communities in Rural England (ACRE) who organise the schme nationally. 

(Photograph courtesy of Teesdale Mercury)

Lawrence Chandler, chairman of Gainford Village Hall management committee, said:

“We are very keen to engage with the Hallmark award scheme. It allows us to check that we are running the village hall to the highest of standards, in line with national good practice, so it is really good news we have achieved level one.

We all need reassurance that we are doing things well and this means our hall users can be even more reassured that the management committee do a great job.”

Hallmark is a national quality scheme for community buildings, which was launched in 2007 by ACRE. There are three levels of the quality standards for different aspects of village hall management.

Canon Neil Russell, committee secretary, said:

“Tracy Emery, from Durham Community Action, has been really supportive in signposting us through this process. We felt rather under scrutiny, which of course we were. She was very thorough in her examination of our processes, policies and documents, so it was a great relief to know she thought we were doing a good job,” he added.

“The award ceremony and the certificate are the icing on the cake. They also show what a great job all our volunteer management committee members do. This award represents many hours of work in good management of the village hall and in preparing all the necessary documentation. We have to thank both the committee and volunteer Kathy Russell for this.”

Committee treasurer, Tony Kennan, said: “One of the great things about the committee is the cross section of villagers playing a vital role in our new plans and developments. They bring energy, enthusiasm and a great professionalism – vital qualities in our volunteers. We now have a powerful mix of old-hands and new blood.”

To find out more about Gainford Village Hall please visit their Facebook page here

To find out more about the Hallmark Scheme, please contact the Durham Community Action Community Support team on 01388 742040 or by email 

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