ACRE guidance on re-opening village halls

National charity, Action with Communities in Rural England (ACRE) has issued new information to help village halls make sense of the latest announcements about the lifting of national lockdown restrictions.

Contrary to the Prime Minister’s announcement on 22 February, village halls will not be able to reopen after Easter, except for a small number of permitted activities.

England’s 10,000+ rural community buildings will instead have to wait until 17 May before they can be hired out for many functions including exercise classes, coffee mornings, performances and celebrations such as weddings and birthday parties.

Information issued by the charity is informed by government guidance published 25 February which sits at odds with earlier ministerial statements.

We hope the information we have published today will help to clarify the situation for the army of volunteers who manage England’s village halls

Deborah Clarke, ACRE’s Rural Evidence and Village Halls Manager explained: “We hope the information we have published today will help to clarify the situation for the army of volunteers who manage England’s village halls. Many will no doubt be disappointed they cannot reopen after the Easter break, despite what the Prime Minister previously indicated. This may be a blessing in disguise however as they now have more time to prepare for resuming activities in the summer when it is safe to do so.”

The update, should be read alongside previous advice and information issued by the charity which provided a detailed commentary on how village halls could previously reopen following the government’s Covid Secure rules.

Posted Thursday, 15th April 2021