20th Jan 2021

Village Halls Week is a national celebration of the 10,000+ village halls which can be found across England, their volunteers and the difference they make to the rural communities they serve.

ACRE's 2021 campaign will be a celebration of how village halls are survivors. Many have been bringing people together in rural communities since the 1920s. In the past year, the volunteers who manage these buildings have shown great determination and resilience in the face of Coronavirus, negotiating lockdowns and putting in place COVID secure measures so they could continue supporting the local community.

As social gatherings are currently off limits, Village Halls Week will look a bit different in 2021 and this year activity will be moved online in the spirit of the times. 

Below you will find an outline of the plan for the week and topics that will be covered. Please get involved as much as you can on social media.

Monday 25 January 2021

“Village halls can be found in almost every rural community across England and date back nearly 100 years.”

Get Involved

Share your hall’s history on social media using the hashtag #villagehallsweek. You could put up old pictures or past flyers, detail significant guests, share an old film or write an article on your history. When was your hall built and what hardships has it faced? Has it been weathered and repaired? Has it offered protection to people in a war? Are you still facing uncertainty?  Perhaps your hall has been saved by fundraising and the support of your community or a grant from an organisation. Share your survival stories on Monday 25 January 2021 using #villagehallsweek.

Listen to Richard Quallington, ACRE’s Executive Director and Deborah Clarke, Village Halls & Rural Evidence Manager launch speech on the ACRE website.

Tuesday 26 January 2021

“Village halls support a great range of activities and events which combat loneliness and support the local economy.”

Get Involved

This is an opportunity to share what you provide for your community. From fitness activities to shops, pubs, schools and wi-fi hubs we want to hear from you. We particularly want to focus on performance and entertainment and bringing it back to village halls.  What have you done and what are your plans for 2021 and beyond?

What's On?

Find out more about Rural Touring as an artist or rural venue. The National Rural Touring Forum are hosting an online call for artists new to rural touring and venues not yet hosting professional small scale touring performances to join the NRTF, Rural Touring Scheme staff and experienced Rural Promoters and find out more about how to get involved. Register here

Wednesday 27 January 2021

“Village halls have shown great resilience in the face of Coronavirus”

Get Involved

How have you survived the lockdowns and closures? Share your story on social media. Why not contact your local BBC radio station to feature your story.

What’s On?

Join an online event sponsored by Norris and Fisher to find out how your village hall can recover from COVID-19. Book your place here

Thursday 28 January 2021

“What does the future hold for village halls?”

(Focus on environment, energy efficiency, carbon net zero)

Get Involved

We want to hear from pioneering halls. Have you got PV Panels? Do you have a vegetable garden? Do you provide electric car charging points? What does your hall do to help the community look after the environment?

What’s On?

Durham Community Action are holding a Share and Learn Meeting for Community Buildings to celebrate ACRE Village Halls Week, and will be an opportunity for trustees and staff to come together to talk about the resilience of community buildings, share ideas and discuss current legislation. Book your place here

Be part of a conversation about what the future holds for village halls and join an online event sponsored by Utility Aid to find out how your village halls can contribute to a zero-carbon future. Book your place here

Friday 29 January 2021

We will take a look back over the week and feature some of our favourite stories of the week, we hope to interview some of you about your plans for the future and we will celebrate ACRE Network members providing 100 years of advice and support for village halls.

Village Halls Domesday Book 2021

Many of England's 10,000 plus village halls date back to the 1920's. To celebrate the contribution they make to rural communities, ACRE has created a virtual Domesday Book for village halls to record the work they are doing in 2021. The record will help make the case for sustained funding and support for village halls which will be especially important as the country recovers from the coronavirus pandemic. Sign it here 

For more information please visit the ACRE website 

Durham Community Action would love to share your stories as part of the national celebration so please send details and photographs of what your community building has been doing to and we will share throughout Village Halls Week on our social media pages. 

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