The old wooden railings along the ramp to the front door finally passed the point of acceptable wobbliness, and we have replaced them with some rather smart black metal ones, which fit rather well with the black metal arch over the garden entrance. We have also renewed the two handrails either side of the double doors. These should serve us well for a good few years.
Thanks to Stuart and Jim for sourcing and arranging installation.
New Zumba class
We have a new Zumba class starting in the hall on Thursday evenings. Join Kayleigh for a fun workout with a latin theme ( that's the music not the language!), just wear your workout kit, bring some water, and lots of energy.
Every Thursday evening from 6pm to 7pm - except the third Thursday of the month when it will be 5pm to 6pm, check the calendar for details.
£7 per session. More info from Kayleigh on 07954 287002.
The village hall AGM took place on Monday 20th March. This included the annual report from the Chairman, and the election of the committee for the upcoming year. After a three year tenure, Jim Atack has stepped down as Chairman and John Harry has taken over the role. Jo Palmer-Phillips will step up as trustee to replace outgoing member Amanda May, and we have three new co-opted members, so welcome to Jonny Butler, Graham Cooper and Gary Burniston. Minutes of the meeting and the Chairman's report can be found on our public documents page.
New Sound System
We now have a sound system installed in the main hall. There are eight speakers around the walls, an amplifier which will take either Bluetooth or wired input, plus a wireless microphone.
If you wish to use the system, please ask when booking and we will provide you with the key to the cabinet. Instructions for using the system can be seen here.
May Fayre 2022
Well, it's all over for another year - the ducks are resting, the maypole dancers are resting, the organisers are definitely resting !!
It was a great day, with what certainly seemed like a record number of visitors keeping the car park marshals and the refreshment volunteers in the village hall on their toes all day. The weather was kind, and we hope that everyone enjoyed the activities, the music, the games, the shopping opportunities and the great variety of food on offer.
Thanks to everyone who contributed to the success of the event - many, many people, helping out in all sorts of ways, before, during and afterwards, we couldn't do it without you.
A splendidly spooky night
There were some very strange apparitions in and around the village hall on Sat 30th Oct for our Halloween Dinner and Dance. It was an excellent evening with over sixty people in a variety of costumes, from the scary zombie end of the spectrum to the elegance of traditional black tie, with a whole lot of variations in the middle ( Peter and Karen both looked very dashing in their pirate outfits ! )
Zest Catering served up a fabulous restaurant-standard three course dinner, and then there was live music from a great soulful trio who had dared to leave London for the depths of Rutland, and who stormed through a great variety of floor fillers - not that us Braunstonians need much encouragement to strutt our stuff.
Thanks go to Karen for her fantastic organisation, and now we're looking forward to the New Year's Eve bash.
Remembering Steve Stafford
A memorial headstone has recently been installed on Steve Stafford's grave in the churchyard.
Steve served the hall for many years as our caretaker and was a core member of the village hall team before his untimely death in 2018. It is good to see that his resting place has now been marked.
In accordance with the government regulations, we will be opening in a limited capacity from May 17th, with full opening after June 21st. We anticipate that the Covid restrictions detailed below in the 21st Aug 2020 update will still apply for a while.
After 17th May 2021 organised adult and children's activities, including exercise classes, can resume in a Covid secure venue, subject to the 'rule of 6' . No private parties apart from 'significant life events', eg weddings and funerals, will be allowed and there is a limit of 30 people at these events.
Outdoor bookings can take place with a maximum of 30 people; use of the kitchen and toilets for these bookings is allowed subject to the rule of 6.
AGM - Monday 8th March 2021The AGM for Braunston and Brooke village hall will be held on Monday 8th March at 7.30pm via Zoom. All villagers are invited to attend and we would very much like to hear your ideas and feedback regarding the village hall and its uses. The AGM usually lasts about 30 minutes. See our Upcoming Events page for full details, including Zoom login info.
Hall re-openingUnder the latest government timetable, village halls will be allowed to re-open after April 12th, but hall use will still be quite restricted so we do not anticpate resuming normal activities until the release schedule allows, potentially May 17th. Watch this space !
Once again the May Fayre has fallen victim to the Covid pandemic - we're planning to be back up and running for 2022, so make sure you mark your diaries in anticipation. Check out the May Fayre page for the latest news, including what's happening with the raffle.
We had hoped to run the Advent Fayre at the end of November but with the continuing Covid uncertainty this has now been cancelled. As an alternative, there will be a virtual event to showcase all the crafts and produce, with the opportunity to buy direct from the sellers. The raffle will still go ahead with the usual excellent hamper prizes. Have a look at the Advent Fayre Flyer for full information.
AGM - Monday 9th March 2020The AGM for Braunston and Brooke village hall will be held on Monday 9th March at 7.30pm in the small hall. All villagers are invited to attend and we would very much like to hear your ideas and feedback regarding the village hall and its uses. The AGM usually lasts about 30 minutes.
We are always looking for new committee members and would particularly like to recruit someone who is representative of young families in the village. If you are interested in helping to run the Village Hall charity contact Rob Anderson ahead of the meeting on 01572 774388
The Village Hall is a wonderful resource. It enables a wide range of regular and 'one off' activities and social events to take place in the village. The building and grounds have been improved year on year and we have a well organised management system in place. We just need a few more people to volunteer a little time to be committee members to help keep the place running smoothly. There are just six committee meetings per year. If you want to know more give Rob Anderson a call on 07900 535250.
On 6th May our village hosted the most amazing May Day Fayre which, as we had hoped, turned out to be a tremendous success.
The Oakham Sings! ladies choir opened the event on the street stage, after which there were four bands playing on the stage throughout the day. Around the village we had variety of street stalls, craft stalls and food stalls. There were fairground rides, maypole dancers, face painting, a dog show, duck racing on the river Gwash and refreshments served all day.
The Rutland Morris Men came and danced for us twice, as did the Rutland Youth Dance Academy. It was a terrific day out for all the family.
Based upon the number of cars that turned up, we feel confident that this was our biggest May Fayre ever in terms of attendance numbers and we estimate that up to 1,600 people turned up.
Now that the figures are in, we would also like to let everyone know that we raised an amazing £10,000 for our local charities; the raffle alone made £3,245. These figures will be further boosted by ticket sales from the Post-May-Fayre live band night which was held in the Blue Ball last Friday. Braunston's own Wrong Direction made a return appearance and the pub rocked into the night !
On behalf of the May Fayre Committee and our charity beneficiaries, we would like to give a huge 'THANK YOU' to everyone who supported the event. All support has been greatly appreciated.
AGM - Monday 25th March 2019The AGM for Braunston and Brooke village hall will be held on Monday 25th March at 8pm in the small hall. All villagers are invited to attend and we would very much like to hear your ideas and feedback regarding the village hall and its uses.
The Village Hall is a wonderful resource which enables a wide range of regular and 'one off' activities and social events to take place in the village, and is a real focus for our community. Come along to hear what's been happening over the last year, and explore how you could get involved. For more information call Rob Anderson on 01572 774388.
Full steam ahead for the May FayrePreparations for this year's May Fayre are now under way - keep an eye on our May Fayre page for the latest news.
Fancy helping out? Get in touch and find out how you can take part in making the day a success, it's good fun and a great way to meet new people around the village.
New Year's Resolutions? Try something new in your village hall
There is something happening in the hall almost every day - why not try something new this year?
On Monday evenings we have Oakham Sings!, a ladies' singing group where the emphasis is on upbeat music and having fun.
Tuesday and Wednesday you'll find the Braunston Table Tennis Club knocking seven bells out of a ping pong ball, new members always welcome. Also on Wednesday the quilting group meets in the small hall, so whether you're an experienced quilter or just starting out there's a place for you with plenty of good chat thrown in as well.
The Gardening Club meet once a month on a Thursday evening, and again monthly on a Thursday, Leslie Gadd from Lovely Loaves runs a baking class - all ingredients supplied, just bring along a container to take home your goodies.
On Friday mornings there are two Pilates classes, just the thing to tone and strengthen ( maybe counteracting the effects of the Christmas season ! ), and on Friday evenings we have the fortnightly indoor bowls club, another group where the spirit of competition doesn't get in the way of a having a sociable evening out - or at least, not too often !!
If you're interested in joining in the fun and learning something new have a look at the Regular Activities page to find out contact details.
Go on - give it a go
Posh or what ?
After nearly one hundred years of sterling service, the floor in the main hall had come to the end of its life - with many of the supporting battens rotten and the boards on top too worn to be refurbished, it was decided to remove everything and start again.
The main hall was closed for three weeks during August while the works were carried out and we're now open for business again with a beautiful oak planked floor which is flat, splinter free and no longer bounces up and down in various spots. There's still a bit of work ongoing to repair the skirting boards and make good the paintwork on the walls but we reckon we've got the poshest hall floor in Rutland. ( Of course it does mean that the indoor bowls team are going to have to rethink their entire technique as the balls will no longer roll in random patterns along the uneven boards !! )
Our thanks to Brian, Sean and Kalvis for their hard work in providing us with a floor that will hopefully last as long as the previous one.
Here are a few thumbnails of the day by day progress - click on them for a bigger view.
Spot the difference
Sharp-eyed residents will have noticed something different about the hall in the last couple of weeks - and for the rest of us here's a couple of 'before' and 'after' photos to demonstrate the change. ( And no, the answer isn't that the sky is now blue ! )
Thanks go to Jim and Phil for the design and execution of our new porch - the old one failed a routine structural inspection and needed to be replaced.
We have a number of other care and maintenance jobs ongoing at present, all part of our general building upkeep programme.
Toddlers Group discontinued
The organisers of the Thursday morning Toddlers Group have told us that the group has now been discontinued, and thank everyone who has supported it over the years.
The village hall would like to thank Sue for setting it up and running it for many years, and latterly for doing the group's admin.
Sad news from the hall
Steve Stafford, our caretaker for more than 20 years was unexpectedly taken ill last month, and died on April 2nd in Leicester Royal Infirmary.
Steve has been a familiar face to most people hiring the hall, making sure that everything was ready for bookings, and also working hard to maintain and improve the fabric of the building, and to keep the gardens looking colourful, especially for events during the summer months.
He was also well known around the village, whether out walking his dog, cycling on various bikes ( including that scary-looking recumbent one ), working on many of our houses, or just enjoying a drink in one, or both, of the village pubs.
Steve's funeral service will be at All Saints' Church on Weds 18th April at 11am, following which we will celebrate his life in the traditional way at the Blue Ball. All are welcome.
Another great quiz night
About 50 hardy souls braved the elements on Friday to enjoy the first quiz night of 2018. With a bit of people-juggling to make up for those who were snowed out, we ended up with eight teams and settled in for some brain stretching questions starting with things beginning with 'A' and going via film quotes, 2017, royalty, locate that statue, musical connections to the last round called, appropriately, 'lasts'. And it wasn't just brain work, as one round involved rushing to the adjudicator's desk after every question to personally deliver the answer - I'm not sure who got the extra points for the best silly walk ( Clare's cartwheel was impressive but possibly disqualified), but Peter Allen certainly did the most mileage.
A break halfway through gave us the opportunity to tuck into baked potatoes and chili, followed by an amazing variety of traybakes and tarts, and the evening was lubricated with the usual offerings from a well-stocked bar.
Scoring was pretty close, with the lead changing regularly throughout the evening, but in the end it was Debbie, Mark, Clare, Tony and Karen who took the first prize honours , closely followed by quiz newbies Mike, Tamsin, David and Chrissie. There was also a consolation prize for the losers, but we'll spare their blushes and keep quiet on their identity !
As always, thanks go to all those who helped make the evening a success - Tracy for the questions, and Nick for compering in his usual excellent style, members of the hall committee for the planning and catering management, Paul for running the bar, and Debbie, Clare, Linda and Pat for the yummy desserts. And to everyone who helped with the washing up and clearing away afterwards - it is always very much appreciated.
All proceeds will be split between the village hall, and the church, and we'll probably do it all again later in the year.