Sunday, 16 July 2017

The Last Hurrah

An expression of 'thanks' for loyal service

You may like to read the content of a speech given at this event - photographs have also been supplied:

"Hello everyone and welcome.

We’ve come here today to mark the closure of the Village Hall. But this event is not new to us: it’s been closed before of course when it burnt down in the early eighties and although it’s going to be knocked down again, this time it will rise again too.

To make sure that when it does return, it remains faithful to its roots and purposes and continues to be an important and accessible resource in the community, some of those who have a long association with the hall are here today.

We are asking these people to safeguard the key to the hall as a symbol of continuity until it does open and to ensure we continue the history and traditions already established.

These people are our guarantors that our new hall will be as useful and accessible to the community, perhaps even more so given the new configuration, space and therefore possibilities.

So today we look to Doreen, Doreen Green who has been in the village around 45 years and on various Village Hall committees for 42 of those years.   This is dedication indeed and as Doreen is still serving this community on the Village Hall Management Committee as we speak, it is an even greater achievement.  We say thank you Doreen and please accept these flowers as a token of our appreciation.

Clodagh West; Dave and Gill Rumbelow; Doreen Green;
Philip and Joan Franklin; Sheila Redshaw; Ian Goldsworthy
We also owe a debt of gratitude to David Rumbelow and his wife Gill. Both have lived in Nocton since the early 70s and yes, 42 of these have been involved serving on committees of one type or another.  Both Dave and Gill have both totted up years of service, with the Parish Council, the Social Club and yes even the Sheepdog Trials committees! Now I’m not pushing for a contest here, but I reckon one of these people will have done one more year than the other? Well if not, then the combined total 42 plus 42 added to Gill’s years of involvement will definitely take us over the 100 year total of years served!

An achievement indeed.

We say thank you and would like to present you with these Gill and to you Dave, the greater reward of the Social Club’s best.

Gill and Dave Rumbelow
Jim Hardy also deserves a mention today ladies and gentlemen. He has seen this hall through all its incarnations and presided over the Members’ Room with unfailing commitment! Jim has been in the village since its days as farming estate. I think all of you will be familiar with the photograph of him in his prime that hangs in the Social Club bar. We hope he will find an appropriate corner to continue his patronage in the new village hall!

Jim and Ann Hardy
Sheila Redshaw, last but not least, who features not only as a village elder, but as our resident historian and recorder of Nocton village life. She has lived in the village for 60 years and one might say has a finger in each corner of it from the church, where her husband was a verger in the early days, to just last week serving on a plant stall to raise funds. Sheila, we look to you to remind us of the past and the many activities and celebrations that have taken place here, as the rebuilding of the Village Hall begins a new chapter for the village community.

Thanks also are due to other many villagers who have ‘done their time’ supporting this hall, some of them are here with us. Joan Franklin, a big thank you and Lorna Storr, both who still give their time to the Village Hall committee.

But progress requires change, and the Parish Council have also put considerable time and effort into developing the plans for a new Hall, and we look forward to seeing it rise up on new foundations.

And on behalf of the Village Hall Management Committee, it is to Ian as Chair of the Parish Council, that I give the key to the Hall, to keep in trust until the new hall is built. We all hope to be here again in the not too distant future, to see the key to the new Hall presented back to a new committee, and we hope that you will all be with us to let Ian know what you think of it!"

Clodagh West (Chair of Village Hall Management Committee)
Photographs by Dave Chapman

Sheila Redshaw; Clodagh West; Ian Goldsworthy


  1. Hello, I am searching for the names of the nursing staff that worked at the Nocton Hall retirement home back in in 1989. I realize that was a long LOONG time ago, but that portion of my life is scattered and a blank. I was there with a US Army unit bringing the RAF Hospital unit to readiness. We were there for a month or two but I really can't recall if it was '88 or '89. I vaguely remember two of the nurses, can't recall names though, sorry. I do seem to recall one of the nurses was under 18...I think. Hopefully, that will be enough.

  2. Hello Walter and thank you for your query. If you have access to the social media that is Facebook [], there is a page full of information relating to the old RAF Hospital. I know many people contribute to this and you may possibly recognise a few of the names from the old days. You can then search for the page in question: 'RAF Hospital Nocton Hall'. It is a public group which you can 'Join' and then participate in the discussion and view the material posted by others. It incorporates many photographs of the buildings and people who served there too. If you don't have access to Facebook, perhaps you might like to join - it is an excellent medium for keeping in touch with old friends around the country... and the world as well. Good luck with your journey. Kind regards, Geoff


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