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Blackwell's -the Village Club

2nd of September 2004

We must begin this update by saying an enormous Thank You on behalf of all connected with the Blackwell’s project and also the village at large, to Bill Calcutt, Joan Golden and Lyle Rainey for organising such a splendid Village Day! As we all know, events of this kind don’t just happen, they take months of planning and involve so many unsung heroes to whom we also send huge appreciation. The wind blew almost relentlessly but was no match for the army of gazebo erectors, the most determined being those struggling with the beer tent! Neither was the wind any match for the amazing array of home grown talent that Joan, ably assisted by Alan on keyboards, brought to the stage to entertain us throughout the day. Morris Dancing, cricket playing in the background, not to mention the Pinney family wedding at St Paul’s, all adding to a perfect backdrop to make this another memorable village occasion.
Not only did the day swell the refurbishment funds by a magnificent £4,000 to £4,500 (final accounts still being prepared), it presented a great opportunity to heighten once more Blackwell’s profile as we find it surprisingly difficult to get our on-going message adequately into the public arena. Readers will see from the leaflet accompanying this edition the progress made converting the first floor room to a modern dance studio that will be used by many children of the village. A coat of paint is also being applied as a temporary measure to make the building look a little brighter! We do of course realise that if we are to make the club a success, it must have a focal point as well as a welcoming family bar, that will make people want to use and support it on an on-going basis. The idea of a gym has been pursued from inception but when the draft plans arrived from the architects it was clear we were trying to squeeze a quart into a pint pot. Subject to the usual planning constraints, there is ample space to enlarge the building and potentially provide a superb facility for the village to be proud of BUT… this will add to the cost and we need to know is it what the village really wants and that it will be supported and not just be a five-minute wonder. Our Fund Raising Team has now begun a survey, with professional guidance, of village groups and individuals with the sole aim of finding out exactly what the people of Chipperfield would like to happen to their Club. This may seem repetitious of past work but it is essential if we are to look at a more ambitious scheme. We obviously need as much input into this survey as possible. If you are willing to help by giving your views please contact Caroline Smith 01923 261810. If you are interested in helping in any other ways or just want to know more about this village asset, please call any of the Trustees whose names you will find on the enclosed leaflet.
Graham Holt, Chairman of the Trustees

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