Hatley Village Association was formed by Hatley Parish Council at its 'ordinary' meeting on 17 January 2012 – principally as a vehicle to raise money to maintain the inside of Hatley Village Hall
It's efforts to date have resulted in new curtains, tables, chairs and, in 2016, a new kitchen.
The idea of the Association came from a survey, created by Alan Pinney and circulated to all homes in East Hatley and Hatley St George in November 2011, which gave useful clues to what uses could be made of the Hall.
The Association has a volunteer committee – Sarah Brennan, Anne Hooley, Peter Mann, Mick Marshall, John O’Sullivan, Alan Pinney and chairman for 2017 Mervyn Lack.
They meet regularly to plan events.
If you've ideas, suggestions or thoughts on what events you'd like to see happening or other ways of generating an income for Hatley Village Hall, please let committee members know via this website’s contact us page and we'll pass your on suggestions.
And it you'd like to hire the Hall for an event – there's a booking form and hire agreement for you to download on the Village Hall page of this website.
Brief history of Hatley Villages Committee
The Hatley Villages Committee was originally set up to organise a Christmas party for the children of the two hamlets by the Hatley Social & Athletic Club in the 1940s. When the club folded, the villages decided to continue the event, so, under the auspices of the Parish Council, who promised to see that a chairperson was elected, a committee was formed to raise funds and organise the party.
Money came in from whist drives and dances in the old village hall adjacent to Rookery Nook, demolished when the new village hall was built. Villagers and parents also made donations. Presents were purchased by the committee for each child up to the age of 14 from the old department store called “Larkinsons” in Biggleswade, and the Father Christmas outfit was made by a committee member. By the early 1970s a raffle was being held for fundraising, but when the licensing laws made this difficult, dances, usually of the disco variety, were used to bring in funds.
The party was a ‘two-tier' event with a party for the younger children and another for the older ones. These were always well attended. Over the years a variety of ideas were tried and originally party games featured largely. They were noisy affairs between competing teams. Then came more modern ideas – such as cartoons, Punch & Judy shows, entertainers and the introduction of carol singing with sherry and mince pies for parents and villagers before home time.
By the early 1990s new families were moving into the village and the committee decided it would be good to introduce more events for the children throughout the year. And so the pancake race, Easter egg hunt, Hallowe'en disco party and carol singing around the village were introduced into the calendar. The committee also organised ‘Hatley Hey Day'.
This ran for two years and, although profitable, involved too much work for the small number of people on the committee. At about this time funding was difficult, but they were able to carry on with the help of the Village Hall Committee, who waived the hire charge, the Hatley Sports & Social Club, which provided the decorations and Christmas tree, and parents, who supplied a present for their own children.
Round about the year 2000, the name was changed to ‘The Hatley Villages Committee' in an attempt to draw together occupants of both hamlets into various social activities. Despite there being only a quarter mile stretch of road between them, the denizens of the two communities, being true Brits, very much go their own rather separate ways.
In 2002 the committee published a handsome booklet to mark the Queen's Jubilee. With photographs and potted biographies of families, pictures of St Denis church in 1910 and 2002 and a history of the Hatleys by Ishbel Beatty, it is an interesting snap shot of the community as it was at the time.
The Committee disbanded in March 2012.