Public meeting called to discuss potential new village hall in Belford

The Ferguson Hall in Belford.The Ferguson Hall in Belford.
The Ferguson Hall in Belford.
Belford residents are being asked for their views on a potential new community venue.

A century ago, villagers came together and turned the former Scotch Presbyterian Church into the Belford And District War Memorial Hall, which was later known as Belford Community Club.

For generations this was a valued meeting space in Belford and surrounding area but since the Memorial Hall was forced to close for structural reasons, Belford doesn't have a village hall.

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The proceeds from the sale of the Memorial Hall are earmarked for the opening of a new hall in Belford.

Last year, residents were invited to complete a questionnaire about the development of a new community hall in Belford, with the majority of respondents were in favour.

Since then a group of interested residents have been looking at possible options.

The Erskine United Reform Church and adjoining Ferguson Hall have now become available as a potential community hall following the church’s closure, and there is the opportunity to try and purchase these on behalf of the village

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A public meeting has been called to provide information and ask villagers for their ideas and views about how this could be managed and used.

Coun Guy Renner-Thompson, who has been involved at looking at options for a new hall, said: "This is a fantastic, once in a lifetime, opportunity for Belford to buy the much loved and well used Ferguson Hall.

“It would be fitting that exactly 100 years after the village came together to form a community hub, they came together again to secure one for the next 100 years.”

Coun Renner-Thompson, local county councillor and parish council chairman, added: “Following a disagreement between two ministers at the Scotch Church in 1777, one left to form a meeting house on Nursery Lane which became the Erskine Church and Ferguson Hall. I wonder if they ever thought that one day the two buildings might come together again."

The public meeting will take place at the Bell View Resource Centre, West Street, on Thursday, March 5 at 7pm. Refreshments will be provided.