There was a great response from communities in Bulphan, West Bergholt, West Hanningfield and others to national Village Hall Week.

Bulphan Village Hall held its 2020 Open Week event during the Community Cafe session on Friday 24th
The 16 regular users of the hall were invited to showcase their activities, as well as a couple of groups who
meet nearby, our community PC, Laura Brady, Local Area Coordinator Pauline White, Rector Sue, Paul, the
milkman who supplies milk for the cafe, Thurrock Community & Voluntary Services who help us with
volunteers. Postman Phil also joined in for a little while.
Bulphan Women’s Institute was formed in 1929 and has met every month since then - originally in the old
“Institute Hall” but in our present hall ever since it was built in the early 1960’s. They had brought their old
scrapbooks, which prompted some visitors to see if they could find photos of their mothers, or their younger

Paul, Ecofresh Dairies, had a splendid display of most of the things he can deliver to Bulphan: he is
certainly doing his bit for sustainability as he only uses returnable milk bottles.

Many of the organisations took up the opportunity to give a short speech on what they offer, and Alicia told us she doesn’t only offer friendly, professional, ethical pet dog obedience classes, but also 1:1 home &
location visits, behavioural consultations, Kennel Club Good Citizens, Agility, Trick Training and, interestingly, help with cynophobia (fear of dogs).

Our cafe volunteers and bar staff were certainly kept very busy all afternoon
Our regular hall users are:
Active Parks
Alicia Obedience Dog Training
Barking Canine Club
Barry Johnson & Sue Little, local Councillors
Bulphan in Bloom
Bulphan Village Community Forum
Bulphan Village Hall CIO
Bulphan Short

As well as our regular bookings (monthly or weekly) we have several others who book annually or a few times
a year:
● Christine Willett Trust fund, who raise money for medical equipment in local hospitals, in memory of a
well-loved Bulphan resident;
● Starlight Children’s Foundation, who raise money for seriously ill children, in memory of another
well-loved young man who lived in Bulphan
● Bluegrass Music Festival: 4 days of amazing music, camping, good food and real ale
● Romford Lions Charity Quizzes
● Mardyke Rotary Christmas Eve Sleigh Tour
● Thurrock Council, for elections, funding workshops and consultation events
● An amazingly successful Lady McAdden Coffee Morning, raising many thousands of pounds every
We will certainly celebrate Village Halls Week next year, probably on a Saturday, and will be able to show offour new shop as well! Thanks to RCCE for all the advice and help we receive throughout the year, especially to Sue Gibson, who provides not only accurate and prompt information but also reassurance when needed!

Orpen Hall in West Bergholt also held an Open Day with 15 people popping in at different times to look at the new Social Club Meeting Room which we were promoting as a daytime space. We also had a good launch of the new online booking system.

West Hanningfield Village Hall held an Open Morning complete with historical documents and memorabillia including a Pathe news film of the evacuation of buildings and farms when Hanningfield Reservoir was built.  John Whittingdale MP attended to hear of the progress being made on the project to rebuild or refurbish the village hall and to support the trustees and community.