High Wych Memorial HallRegistered Charity No: 302395
1946 - 1970
(From an original article by Theo van de Bilt, Official High Wych Historian)
On March 11th 1948, the then trustees of High Wych Memorial Hall applied to be registered as a charity and a Management Committee was set up.
Henry Fowell Buxton, sole survivor of the original Trustees, sat on the Committee together with his son John Fowell Buxton.
Other members of this first Committee included:
Leonard Helmer - local builder - representing High Wych Parish Council
Rev. Edward Bannister - vicar of High Wych - representing Parochial Church Council
Alfred Mabey - Headmaster of High Wych - representing Parochial Church Council
Miss Grace Dunn - representing the Women's Institute
Michael Elsdon - representing the Committee of the High Wych men's Club.
It is known that around this time the Hall was being used as a canteen for the children of High Wych School. This brought in valuable revenue from the Council who paid for hiring the Hall to prepare, cook and serve school dinners to the children in the main hall. This arrangement continued up until the early Seventies.
Those who remember those times also remember hard folding chairs and splinters in backsides!
The Hall also became a meeting place for a thriving Youth Club which attracted local teenagers. Some recall having to dismantle the stage before a billiard table could be erected.
By early 1969, it was clear that Arthur Clow could no longer continue to run the Hall single-handedly and under the stewardship of Len Helmer and Michael Elsdon, a new Committee was formed to reorganise the day-today running of the Hall.
Michael Elsdon took over the Chair of this Management Committee in June 1970 and at that same meeting, it was decided that major improvements and an extension to the Hall be undertaken.
Mr Bob Springham, a local architect, offered his services and produced the necessary drawings and a model. All that was needed now was the money!!!