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Lidgate Village Hall re-opens after £29,000 revamp

Villagers in Lidgate have celebrated the re-opening of their village hall after a £29,000 refurbishment.

Cutting a ribbon, which was held by John Quigley, chairman of the hall committee, and David Hole, project manager, was the Rev Anthony Foreman, a former parish priest at Newmarket Roman Catholic Church and long-time resident of the village, whose family can be traced back many generations in Lidgate and the surrounding area.

His father Humphrey, the local wheelwright who was born in 1889, was a pupil at Lidgate School which was built in 1838.

Lidgate Village Hall re-opening
Lidgate Village Hall re-opening

The building was handed over to the village when the school closed in 1962 and became the hall.

The re-opening ceremony, on Saturday, August 21, was followed a by a barbecue in the hall garden.

“Most of the money was spent on refurbishing the toilet block which was pretty dire,” said Sarah Quigley.

“We now have unisex toilets with disabled and baby changing facilities.”

The wooden floor in the main hall has been stripped and polished, and the hall and kitchen have been redecorated. Guttering and downpipes have been repaired or replaced and drainage work has been carried out to the rear of the building.

The committee is hoping the building will attract interest from people wanting to hold parties or run classes of various kinds there in addition to the pilates sessions which are already held once a week.

The money for the work has been raised by individuals, mainly villagers, who donated via a Just Giving page and through grants from HDH Wills Estates, Bernard Sunley Foundation, Havebury Housing Partnership, Suffolk Community Foundation, Lidgate Parish Council, Suffolk County Council, Tesco Bags of Help and Waitrose Community Matters.

Anyone wishing to inquire about the hire of the hall should call 01638 500345 or visit www.lidgate.suffolk.gov.uk.

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