Downley War Memorial Hall
The Downley War Memorial Hall was built in 1923, with monies raised by public donation within the village of Downley in memory of the 22 men who died in the Great War of 1914-1918. The land for the building was donated by Sir John Dashwood. It is a sloping site and this resulted in the lower and upper floors being built. The upper area consisted of the main hall with a stage and a room that served as a committee room and changing area with access to the stage. A staircase leads to the lower floor which comprised a kitchen, club room and a large storage area under the main hall floor.
The services at that time comprised two bucket type toilets, water came from a cistern fed from the roof drainage. Heating was via a number of 'Tortoise' type solid fuel stoves and lighting was via pressurized paraffin lamps. Water, drainage and lighting were all upgraded as the mains services were brought into the village.The management of the hall was by a committee of Trustees. In the 1980's the hall was registered as a charity.
Following the 1939-1945 war the names of the 5 men who lost their lives during the war were added to the memorial tablet.
Office Hours: Tuesday, Wednesday & Thursday 10.00am to Midday
Outside of these hours please email your request and/or check calendar on our website
Inside the Hall
The Current Situation as at March 2011
Major work is still required to put the hall in a good state of repair. The Trustees have over the past few years installed central heating and some double glazing, but they desire to make the hall available to all members of the community. The building of an annexe to contain a more user friendly staircase, plus two disabled toilets has now been completed. Currently the original roof roof tiles are being replaced to ensure the building is water proofed against what ever the weather may do. It is hoped that the installation of a disabled/wheelchair access ramp to the main hall at road level will be done in the near future, we are waiting on the planning application decision, which we hope will be successful, but even then we still need to raise more funds to pay for it.
However, even when this is done there will still be a lot more work to be done to make the building more user friendly, the refurbisment of the kitchen area, upgrading of the original toilets and generel redecoration.
Plans for the future
Some of the works needed are:
- Refurbishment of the brickwork
- Disabled/Wheelchair ramp access to both ground and lower floors
- New roof and insulation - Now under way
- New staircase - Now under way
- New disabled toilets to the ground and lower floor - Now completed
Then Trustees have attempted to secure grants from both the National Lottery and Biffa through a scheme linked to landfill taxes. Unfortunately both were unsuccessful, but they are still trying.
Outside of the Hall