News & Events
2017 Village Hall Survey & Launch of 'The Friends of Isfield Village Hall'The closure of Isfield Preschool after 40 years in the village is a sad loss to the community which impacts Isfield Village Hall severely; Preschool's subsidised hiring fees amounted to 42% of our income last year, and has been a much higher percentage in previous years. This is a huge blow but we are financially stable and expect to be able to meet our day-to-day running costs with both the ongoing support of our users and by continuing to run our own events, and by monitoring our expenditure even more closely, because we have:
- Refurbished the hall completely in August; this was badly needed, is a great success and should last a good few years, keeping maintenance costs down,
- Increased our revenue over the past three years by introducing new activities (e.g. Wine Club, Art Group, Yoga, Tai Chi, Pilates, Vintage dance classes, Floral workshops etc.) and holding our own events (e.g. Frost Fair, Open Day, Race Nights, Film shows).
Nevertheless to combat the loss of Preschool, we need to introduce more revenue raising initiatives to meet unexpected events, to build up reserves for regular maintenance costs (e.g. floor, decoration) and to make more improvements (e.g. to the toilets, including a disabled toilet). The management committee ran a survey in the village to evidence the level of interest in our ideas and ensure viability. The survey, sent out in the last Isfield newsletter, sought to find out:
i) How important is the Village Hall to Isfield's residents?
ii) What activities and events does Isfield want at its Village Hall?
We have received 60 survey responses which is a tremendous result; thank you to everyone who responded and gave us so many good ideas which we are now analysing. All responses strongly supported the need for the Village Hall, and all but 3 stated they would join 'The Friends of Isfield Village Hall.' The prize draw was held at the Laughing Fish on Sunday 10th September and the worthy winner, who came up with lots of good ideas, has received her prize.
'The Friends of Isfield Village Hall' will be launched later this week asking the community to donate what they can to the village hall's emergency and maintenance reserves. We envisage running Friends' events (e.g. summer barbeques, Christmas film shows) and setting up a Friends' Advisory Group.
Upcoming Events at the Village Hall
- Kathleen Cole dance teaching for children is based on NATD Contemporary Dance technique in a positive, relaxed atmosphere, with lots of fun built in. The principal is Hannah Kathleen Cole, who has been classically trained with the RAD method.She was also a member of The Young Place, home of London Contemporary Dance School, where she gained a wealth of experience as a performer and choreographer. Miss Hannah went on to train at The London Stage School in advanced ballet, tap and modern jazz. She taught in primary schools offering dance and performing arts tuition and then gained a Diploma in Contemporary Dance. She now enjoys combining these areas of expertise to offer dance classes to young people. Working with Miss Hannah is Miss Jennie, an experienced secondary school teacher and leader in English and the performing arts. Miss Jennie has worked in a variety of schools including an independent school where she was head of department for English and drama. Miss Jennie enjoys developing children's skills and confidence through the performing arts. There will be opportunities for dancers to perform and prepare for exams if they wish, but this is optional. Classes are held on Sunday mornings in Isfield Village Hall; Infants, 5+, 10-10.45am; Juniors 8+, 11-11.45am. Please email to book your free taster class.
- Isfield Wine Club which has built up a strong following, warmly welcomes new members. Meetings, held every other month, are relaxed and unpretentious - the next meeting is on Friday 17th November, 7.30pm to 9pm, and the subject will be announced in advance. Contact Keith Taylor for more details on 01825 749778.
- Helen of Brighton Boogie ('Fun vintage dance lessons and events') runs classes on Tuesday evenings, 7.30pm to 8.30pm restarting again on 5th September. Helen's classes for adults are very popular and a great way to get fit. Email Helen for more details and to register your interest, and take a look at her website.
- We are delighted to announce our first new weekday morning event - Thursday mornings, 9.30am to 10.25am, Pilates classes from 7th September run by Medeana Findlay. We have been keen to attract a Pilates instructor to Isfield for some time, and visitors to the Village Hall Open Day in March will have met Medeana who had a stall to introduce her classes and gauge interest. Contact Medeana on firstname.lastname@example.org to find out full details.
- Isfield Art Group: Steve Pierce-Smith's classes which take place on Thursdays 2-4pm at the Village Hall, restart on 21st September. The group use watercolour, acrylics, pastels and charcoal, and cover a wide variety of subject matter including life, landscape, pop art, still life, portrait etc. All levels from beginners to experienced artists will find Steve's classes, and the group's support, stimulating and very enjoyable. For more details contact Steve by email on .
- Andrea Kocache of Crowborough Tai Chi, a listed instructor with the Tai Chi Union of Great Britain, is running Monday afternoon sessions, 2-3pm. Please note that Andrea is happy for anyone to start Tai Chi with her at any time, integration guaranteed; there is no 'course' start date. In addition, Andrea informs us that Tai Chi is an internal art rooted in the healing, meditative and martial traditions of China which integrates relaxation, meditation, breathing and postural techniques, helps to develop/regain balance, promotes harmonious movement, improves suppleness of joints and muscles, improves coordination skill and stimulates the mind. Please register your interest by contacting Andrea on 01892 654585 or by email and take a look at the website.
- Isfield Dancing Club holds regular twice a month Wednesday evening sessions, 8-10pm, at the Village Hall, with occasional special event nights. This is a very enjoyable, relaxed evening and a great opportunity to learn and display your dancing skills. For more details please contact Ron Levett on 01825 750404.
- Blackbird Arts, run by Isfield artist Adele Scantlebury, are holding another Woodblock printing workshop on Saturday 7th October, 10am to 5pm, to teach the basic techniques using a wooden spoon; design, carve and print from your own woodblock. In addition there will be another Mosaic workshop on Saturday 4th November, 10am to 5pm. Places are limited - for more details and to book contact Adele on 07969 119479 or email and take a look at the website.
This Year's Frost Fair; Sunday 26th November 2017
Last year's Isfield Frost Fair was spectacular; local artists, crafts people and suppliers ran imaginative and very attractive stalls offering unique, locally produced gifts (knits, ceramics, artworks, prints, jewellery, aromatic soaps and toiletries, candles, plants, bird feeders & nest boxes, hampers, French macarons, Free trade raffia handbags & hats, handcrafted wooden toys, gardening gifts, etc.) and Christmas fare (cards, Christmas wreaths & table centres, Christmas tree ornaments, cheeses, specialist charcuterie, chutneys & jams, mustards, Christmas cakes & puddings, gift packs etc.). The fair was a great success thanks to our wonderful stall holders and volunteers donating cakes and raffle prizes, offering teas and cakes, and running the raffle. The exhibitors are keen to participate at our next fair, along with some very interesting new stands, and we are holding it on Sunday 26th November 2017.
Millwood Designer Homes Donation and Our Completed RenovationsAs custodians of a beautiful early 20th century building that needs constant attention, the Village Hall management committee have carried out much needed major renovation and maintenance work during the August school holiday period this year; kitchen, toilets, full internal and external decorating, curtains repaired and rehung, new kitchen windows. Village Hall Trustee, Ron Levett, ably assisted by his wife Margaret, has worked in the hall almost every day during the renovations and has done an enormous amount of work that has saved us a lot of money. The hall is looking magnificent now and we very much look forward to welcoming the village to take a look at what has been achieved in a relatively short time.
We would not have been able to meet the cost of this work (over £17,000) without a very generous donation from Millwood Designer Homes who presented a cheque for £5,000 to Keith Taylor, Chairman of the Village Hall, and Peter Holmes, Secretary, at a special ceremony held at the Lavender Fields show house on 9th March. We thank Millwood Homes most sincerely for this donation. The balance of the cost will be met from our own fund raising events over the last few years, and we are in the process of applying to other funding sources. The Management Committee agreed to continue with the much needed renovations, most of which were already fully committed, in spite of the drop in our revenue due to Pre School closing.