Walsham le Willows Community Council was established in 1967 and was registered as a charitable trust with the Charities Commission for England and Wales, in October 1979, with the objective of providing recreational facilities, playing fields, playgrounds, community centres and other amenities of a similar character for the benefit of the community in the interests of social welfare and with the object of advancing education, furthering health, relieving poverty, distress or sickness or in pursuing other charitable objects. The Executive Committee comprises 4 honorary Officers/Trustees (Chair, Vice-Chair, Treasurer and Secretary) plus a maximum of 14 other Elected Members (Resident individuals who are 18+ and are interested in furthering the work of the Council), and another 4 Representative Members: (Parish Council, Sports Club, Women’s institute and Parochial Church Council.)
The Trustees are, Robert Barber, Ian Bartholomew and Robert Bell.
The Council has a formal constitution (last amended on the 7th of September 1992), acting as an umbrella and resource body for the whole community.
NOTE; On May 13th 2010 the AGM took place at 7.30 in the Village Memorial Hall when a motion was put before the meeting (AND APPROVED) that the constitution is amended as follows:
Section 5 paragraph (b) currently reads "The Chairman and the Honorary Officers of the Council hold office until the conclusion of the Annual General Meeting of the Council next after their election but shall be eligible for re-election PROVIDED THAT the Chairman shall not hold office for more than five consecutive years."
This was amended to read: "The Chairman and the Honorary Officers of the Council hold office until the conclusion of the Annual General Meeting of the Council next after their election but shall be eligible for re-election PROVIDED THAT the Chairman shall not hold office for more than seven consecutive years."
The Memorial Village Hall is a separate Charitable Trust registered with the Charity commission for England and Wales. The hall was erected 'as a thanksgiving offering for victory in the second world war and as a memorial to the fallen'. In 1951 Dr. Malcolm Poign from "The Beeches" donated the land on which the hall now stands. In January 1952 Frederick Ellis, Ralph Richard Clarke and Stanley Collins signed a Trust Deed and as Trustees of the land employed an architect to draw up plans for a village hall. In 1959 the completed hall was hired out for the first time. It became a Registered Charity in July 1964. For more information see James Turners book 'Wartime Walsham' - Walsham le Willows 1939-1945.
A Charitable Trust was established by Trust Deed. The hall was built mainly by the voluntary labour of the people and craftsmen of the village. The 1.33 acres on which the hall stands is situated in the centre of the village and includes the car park and bowling green and this land is held in the name of the Trust for a public amenity in the centre of the village. The Trust was originally established for the "purposes of physical and mental training and recreation and social and moral and intellectual development... for the benefit of the inhabitants of the Parish of Walsham le Willows in the county of Suffolk and its immediate vicinity without distinction of sex or of political, religious or other opinions..."
In 1990 the Village Hall Committee stood down and its responsibilities were taken over by the Community Council. As recommended by the Charity Commissioners separate financial accounts continued to be operated for each charitable trust.
The Community Council is responsible for the upkeep and management of the Memorial Village Hall (see Village Memorial Hall Fund for things related to the Hall’s Restoration Fund). The Council acts as an umbrella organisation supporting a wide range of activities including the Mother and Toddler Group, Digital Cinema Club, Satellite Post Office, Neighbourhood Watch and Police liaison, Coffee Shop, and Touring Theatre Groups, and it directly sponsors three household competitions during the year, namely
The Community Council publishes a monthly magazine, The Observer and distributes this, free of charge, to every household in the parish. This magazine is edited, printed, collated and distributed by volunteers from within the community. It contains up to date news of village events, detailed reviews of various stage productions etc. The magazine also contains a number of advertisements from both individuals and of various local services.
The Community Council also operates and manages this village website; i.e. www.walsham-le-willows.org . This website tends to take a broader view of the village as it is of course globally available throughout the World Wide Web.
The Village Hall has been in serious need of updating and general improvements for some years, hence the formation of the Village Memorial Hall Fund and, as can be seen by clicking on that reference the hall has now been extended, a disabled toilet and shower room has been added along with a small meeting room and a much needed storage area. And now, in January 2012, a team of volunteers has repainted the hall prior to the rehanging of a new set of curtains.
Keyboard / Organ available at no extra charge.
The Council is currently applying for various grants to allow the approved plans for the further refurbishment facilities at the Memorial Village Hall along with (see the Village Memorial Hall Fund
For any queries etc, please telephone Theresa on 01359 259586