AGM - Sept 5th 2019
Thank you to everyone who attended the AGM, it was great to see some new faces. We would like to welcome Corrina Hewat and Jenny Bruce to the committee! We look forward to working with you both! :)
A final thanks to outgoing Chairman, Neil Heydon-Dumbleton, for all the hard work and support he has given to the hall over the years, (it was mentioned at the AGM that Neil has been on the committee in some capacity since 2000!!)
So thanks again everyone for your ongoing support! We have an exciting programme of events to finish off the year, so we hope to see you then.
(If you haven't already or know someone who would like to, please sign up to our mailing list to stay in the loop!)
Chairman's Report 2019
It good to note that Pathhead Village Hall is probably busier than it has ever been on a day to day basis. The hall continues to provides a venue for the Pathhead Youth Project drop-in and for the Sports and Social Club that is open most evenings. As well as the drop-in, the PYP have used the hall for the talent show, for the Burns Supper for pensioners and for fundraising events to support their summer program of events.
The summer program organised by the PYP and the Messy Church events allow children to attend art and other classes in the hall during the summer holiday. The hall is also used to host councillor surgeries and information meetings, e.g. about recent housing developments. A new Mothers and Toddlers group has also been set up to run weekly and it is hoped that will continue.
Several fitness activities are increasingly held during each week for a range of age groups and currently include classes by Metafit, Hypopressive, Pathhead Yoga and Zumba. The Pathhead Players, presented the play "Men Should Weep" in April and the village pantomime "Beauty and The Beast" at Christmas. The Sports and Social Club organised a New Years Day Disco and village Children's Christmas Party that was very popular. Despite many power cuts and much snow, the annual Cool Yule was a great success. The PMC new year ceilidh had to turn people away. The Pathhead and District Horticultural Club have held the Village Flower Show in the hall every September since the hall was built in the 1950s and I think detected a renewed interest last week in the "Horti".
The members to the committee continue to bring energy to the meetings and have put in a massive amount of effort in this year to fix some of the faults and issues with the fabric of the building that needed attention - including fixing and replacing parts of the previously "bouncy" hall floor and repairing the day room windows. The Sports and Social club have refurbished the snooker room to a high standard. It is a real positive to report that the hall now also makes a small profit from its day-to-day activities against the running and maintenance costs. Previously the hall had been losing money and was subsidised from historical savings and occasional grants. This has put the hall in the position that it has been able to spend money to address some long outstanding issues.
The hall committee set up a consultation exercise with the village to find out how and if the hall should be improved or further developed. This consultation was carried out in parallel with launching a new website and newsletter. Feedback suggested that development of the hall could include creating a new front to support a café, additional smaller rooms for hire by smaller groups or even creating a gym.
It is possible that the hall could also be involved in some way in helping run the village Sports Pavilion. Although owned and rented out by the Council currently, the pavilion is in a poor state of repair and may be closed. This would adversely impact the village football club and some pensioners' events. Any such involvement would however have to be after very careful consideration.
One key comment noted from the consultation however, has been the state of the toilets in the hall and bar. Although serviceable they were in need of notable refurbishment. We are told that this has put some people off from attending events or hiring the hall. Given the positive state of finances and that other significant repair work was done by the committee, refurbishing the toilets has been made a priority this year, although it has been very difficult to find tradesmen to take this on. It is therefore great to report the hall toilet refurbishment is (all but) completed and work will now start on the bar toilets. This work will be followed by repainting the hall interior.
The hall fortunes have ebbed and flowed over the past couple of decades, but it is an integral part of community life, and continues to fulfil its remit to support the heath and wellbeing of people in the district. Hopefully the recent and pending refurbishments will make it a more attractive venue to attend and hire and other new activities and events will be set up. With this in mind the committee are planning events for the latter part of 2019, including a big band night, another film, a Cool Yule and three events in the Midlothian Science Festival. It is hoped that villagers will support these new events.
2019 has therefore seen a welcome continuation of the Hall's established events and its history and the initiation of new events and an improvement in facilities. In 2018 I indicated I would stand down as Chairman which I still intend to do. I will continue to be involved in the Hall, but I think it is now the time for someone new to build on these changes so the Hall remains relevant to the village as it and the health and welfare needs of the villagers change.