Village of Haddenham

Fond Farewell to Sue Parkinson

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Sue Parkinson 01a

The highlight of Wednesday night's AGM of the Haddenham Village Hall Management Committee was the presentation of a case of wine to Sue Parkinson as a sincere token of thanks for her 25 years service as Secretary of the village hall.

Sue took over the role from her mother-in-law, the legendary Mabel Parkinson, and managed to combine this work with bringing up her family and juggling another job, a true feat in multi-tasking as she recalls her phone ringing about the village hall at all times of night and day!

Margaret Aston, the Chair of the Executive Committee thanked Sue on behalf of everyone in the village for her dedication and wished her all the best for her 'retirement' from the role.

The AGM was very well attended and the new executive committee was pleased to hear views from the users about possible ways forward to maximise the utility of the village hall as a vital community resource.

Margaret said "There is much work to be done to ensure that the village hall becomes an up-to-date hub for the social life of the village, and we are very fortunate to have a group of enthusiastic volunteers, ably supported by our new administrator, Pete Summerskill."

"Pete has already created an online booking system, and the village hall now has its own phone number and offers WiFi to its visitors."

An important first step will be to examine and consider updating the constitution of the village hall and perhaps clarifying the somewhat opaque management responsibilities of the Banks Park Trust and the Parish Council as distinct from the Village Hall Management Committee. There will also be need to put in place formal arrangements for regular Health and Safety audits and related management tasks and responsibilities as now required under recent legislation.

In response, Steve Sharp formally proposed a review of the village hall constitution which is currently based on a 1961 document written on parchment! It was no surprise that his motion was accepted unanimously.

A structural audit of the hall was recently commissioned and the report is due to be made available in the next week or two. It is anticipated that the report will flag up the need for some significant capital investments over the next couple of years, a replacement boiler being high on that list.

Bookings for the village hall can now be made online here

or by telephone: 01844 296092

or face-to-face by popping into the village hall office (to the right, just inside the main entrance) and speaking to Pete Summerskill.

The email address is: haddenhamvh@gmail.com

The current website is bucksvoice.net/haddenham-vh

Anyone with relevant professional expertise who may be prepared to offer advice on a pro bono basis to help develop the village hall, is warmly invited to get in touch with members of the Village Hall Management Committee — via Pete Summerskill in the first instance.

(Image courtesy of Lindsey Poole)