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Western Gazette - 2nd October 2008

Posted by admin on Oct 05, 2008 - 10:14 AM

Website award article and photographs

WEB WONDER: Hadspen Village Hall committee secretary Carole Wyatt and David Jury with the award won for the website he designed that is dedicated to the hall.

Village hall web site clicks with judges

by Alison Butts Staff Reporter e-mail cary-bru-winc@westgaz.co.uk

A WEBSITE dedicated to building a new village hall has received recognition for its service to the community.

The Community Council for Somerset Communication Competition 2008 named the Hadspen Village Hall website overall winner in the small-village category.

David Jury of Hadspen designed the website so that people could follow progress of the project to build a new hall, improve access and extend the car park.

The regular updates, ease of navigation, clarity of design, gallery, events diary, a text resizing facility, search function, feedback forms and spam prevention won over the judges, and the award was presented at a ceremony in Williams Hall, Stoke St Gregory.

Another website Mr Jury has worked on, for Pitcombe Parish Council, was highly commended in the small village category.

He said: "It was rather a surprise. It was unexpected but very enjoyable. The most important thing is it is good for the community.

"We wanted a website that was for the community, and one that was easy for the community to use. We've tried to make it as simple as possible with the site navigation.

"We put in visual text sizing. It increases the text size for people to read."

The Hadspen hall site is closely linked with the Pitcombe Parish Council pages, which serve the same population.

Hall committee secretary Carole Wyatt encouraged Mr Jury to enter the awards and said: "We were absolutely delighted. When the hall was demolished we thought all the residents would like to follow our progress through the website.

"All the pictures of the rebuild were put on the web-site, so people could see all the progress without getting muddy boots.

"Now its a very valuable tool for people who want to build a hall or use the space to book an event. All the bookings go onto the web-site so people can see when it's free.

"David has done a fantastic job. The village hall committee are delighted, we are all thrilled to bits."

Hadspen hall is a registered charity and serves Pitcombe, Cole and Hadspen. It has received many contributions towards the total cost of the two-phases project of around 230,000. The local community raised 85,000 through events including an auction of promises, an attic sale, a draw and a Gift Aid scheme.

The original hall was constructed in 1938 by the community, but eight years ago structural surveys revealed poor foundations were causing the building to crumble. The improved hall was officially opened on 20 June this year.

TO see the award-winning websites visit www.hadspenvillagehall.org and www.pitcombepc.org.uk