IT HAS taken a mammoth repair and refurbishment project amounting to hundreds of thousands of pounds, but some ten years after The Greig Hall in Alcester closed its doors to the public – it is reopening.
The abandoned hall, in Kinwarton Road, enjoyed 60 years at the centre of Alcester’s community, hosting a range of entertainment and public events, from shows to parties to sports.
But due to falling into financial difficulties, the town venue was forced to shut in 2011. During the next decade the Greig Hall was left locked up and allowed to fall into a state of disrepair.
Residents, determined to get the Greig Hall back up and running and transform it back into the community hub it once was, encouraged Alcester Town Council to negotiate a lease with Stratford District Council. And after three years of wrangling, they were finally handed the keys to the building in 2021 and the newly formed charity group ‘The Greig Hall’ took charge of the restoration project.
A huge fundraising drive was launched to raise cash to refurbish the hall and carry out a host of necessary repairs, while a call went out for volunteers to lend their skills to carry out the work required.
The town council also secured a loan for £100,000 and SDC stumped up £50,000. Over £100,00 was raised through fundraising.
Now following 12 months of hard graft, Chair of the Greig Hall working group, Coun Mark Cargill, announced on the Greig Hall’s web page that the hall was set to open in September with a host of fundraising events in what he termed a “stress testing of the hall”.
Coun Cargill continued: “As you can see, we have been busy. A huge thanks to everyone who has helped so far.
“As you can imagine, none of this would have been possible without our fantastic volunteers. It is you who make the difference. There is still more to do in the hall but now we need to look forward.”
An official opening ceremony will be held in February 2023 with one of the first major events at the new hall being the annual general meeting.
Work carried out so far to get the neglected hall up and running includes replacing the old wiring, adding new heating and hot water systems, fully waterproofing and repairing the roofs where needed, insulating the ceiling to bring it up to modern standards and fitting LED lights.
The walls have also been insulated and plastered, new high security doors and fire doors have been fitted, a new CCTV system has been installed and outside, fencing has been put up to prevent access to the roof and anti-social behaviour.
Work still needs to be done to the garden, painting inside and the installation of an air conditioning unit.
To volunteer visit https://greighall.org.uk/volunteer/