The Isle of Whithorn Village Hall

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St. Ninian's Village Hall
The Isle of Whithorn

The Isle of Whithorn

Funders Positive about Project

With the mandate from the community to progress with the
project to enhance the facilities at St Ninians Hall, we submitted 5 funding bids , totally over £500,000 to fund the New Facility.

Initial feedback from the National Lottery and LEADER ( European funding) was
extremely positive, although we didn't fully meet their criteria, they reported that we were on the right road. They provided the trustees with feedback guiding them as to how the applications could be improved to meet their requirements. The trustees were invited to resubmit the applications in the new year, a situation which does not occur very often.
Our other three funding bids to smaller funders are due to be considered very soon, and it is hoped that this will fund the final architectural drawings and planning permissions. Final drawings will be displayed for public information and comment.
Watch this space.


With the first year under our belt, we thought it was about time to show you what improvements we have made. As you can see below we have fully repainted the outside, but it is inside where the most improvements have been made.

Before ..........After

Before ............................................................................After ( with hall manager Bob Rowley)


New hall ...........New seats

Newly refurbished hall with new heating system!............... New tiered seating for cinema and concerts

For bookings please call the hallkeeper Liz Kiltie on 01988 500015 or for further information call Jeanette Duncanson , Hall Co-ordinator on 01988 500911

Now available for bookings for all events, weddings, parties, receptions, conferences, film nights, talks, musical events, whatever, including private cinema screenings. Why not have your group or organisation come and watch a film of your choice on the big screen and enjoy refreshements in the comfort of this wonderful new venue.



Saturday 21st.March, saw the next painting party which has taken to exterior of the hall to be almost finished. Again a huge thank you to every one who helped, with special mention to the "dinner ladies" who served everyone with coffee and hot soup and rolls. Wonderful.

Hard at work Team photo!


Last Friday our steel storage container finaly arrived and was to be sited down the north side of the hall. Under the superb direction of the vision in orange, hall manager Bob Rowley, it went remarkably easily. Here is a story board of the installation.

This is going to be very tight!! Easy does it Just about there

Last lap Nearly there Perfect

A huge thank you to Darren Kelly for his superb manouvering in the fork lift, 3b Construction, D&G Council for the container and Luce Bay for the transport. All we have to do now is seal it and paint it. Easy!!


Last Saturday the external redecoration got under way with a Painting Party which was well attended by about a dozen folk, wielding paint brushes and rollers with reckless abandon!

Painting up a Storm

A huge thank you to everyone who came along, and to the 'Catering Crew'; who kept everyone fed and watered.


Disability Discrimination Act Upgrade Started

Ramp extention at side door. Preparation for new front ramp

Monday morning saw the long awaited upgrade to the faclities at the hall to comply with the Disability Discrimination Act. A new disabled toilet inside the ladies, new ramp at the front of the hall, an extended ramp at the side entrance, new outside lights on the shore side, and other amendments to help wheelchair users to navigate through the building. We are working with the Local Authority to have changes made to the gents toilet as well in order that disabled users can use a toilet appropriate to their gender. That change will hopefully come later this year.

In goes the concrete Concrete in.

St. Ninian's Hall

The Committments


Things are now starting to move at a pace. The Disability Discrimination Act refurbishment work started yesterday ( Mon 2nd March) and if it goes to plan will be finished by Friday. This will give us a disabled toilet, improved external lighting, a new ramp at the front door, an improved ramp at the side door, and improved visibility for wheel chair users on the internal doors.

In addition, we have now had approval to order the cinema equipment which we have done. The new blackout blinds are bought as the new curtain poles. A sewing bee is being formed as we speak to sew up the new curtains ready for hanging. We have an application into Dulux for a grant to purchase paint for the hall. The wiring for the new cinema will be completed this week. The exterior of the hall is under going powerwashing in preparation for the painting, and watch this space for notification of the painting party. The new chairs are due for delivery next week ( w/c 9th March). We will endeavour to keep the disruption to the use of the hall to a minimum, but ask for everyones patience should there a little inconvenience. The floor has to be sanded and re-varnished and re-lined. The colours for the walls has been decided. The external walls are to be white with black rone pipes and window sills and guttering. The internal walls are to be a pale cream on top with a pale green on the bottom to match the green curtains.

Due to the funding proceedures, the new curtain track for the stage will not be in place immediately.

CGR Home Improvements won the contract to replace all the external doors and make the internal alterations necessary for the cinema control room. Unfortunately bureacracy took over and we were told at the last minute we needed a building warrant, and our attempts at fast tracking drawings met with failure and we have had to engage an architect. At this time we await the drawings so we can summit our building warrant request and make the alterations.

We have also made a funding bid for funds to replace the lighting and heating in the hall. The lighting must be changed as it does not conform to health and safety regulations. The heating is expensive and really doesn't heat the hall properly. We await the results of this bid as the cost will be in the region of £9,000.

We will keep you up to date with the developments as they happen.

We are still on track for an April first screening form Machars Movies. (Just!)

Kenny Barr


The refurbishment has now begun and is well under way. The roof repairs have been completed, the roof cleaned of moss and the guttering and down pipes repaired or replaced as required. I want to thank Jason McGuire for a splendid job. We have now sold all the old benches and even managed to sell the piano. Well done Bob on that one. New plumbing has been installed in the public toilets to reduce the amount of water used in the gents urinals. From April we will be charged for all water used through a meter. The new chairs are due for delivery soon, and we have the curtain material ready to be made up into the new curtains.

We intend to put up nice new poles for the curtains, and install blackout blinds to accommodate the cinema. The cupboard at the rear of the hall ( to the right of the main doors as you come in) is being converted into a control room for all the various technologies. Tenders have gone out for this work, and a contractor appointed.
This requires the door to be moved and an observation window created. We are having extra electrics installed as well.

We have also put out to tender the replacement of all the external fire doors which are now in an extremely poor state of repair. This is now an urgent item in the refurbishment as we will require a fire safety inspection in the near future. We ask that parents encourage their kids NOT to kick footballs off the new doors when fitted. We are considering new security measures for the hall in light of the added equipment.

We have now received all the tenders for the supply of the cinema equipment and have, in association with Scottish Screen. appointed AVC-Electrosonic of Edinburgh. We have now ordered the equipment and are still on track for a first screening in April 2009. All the underfloor cabling for the hall sound and lighting has been installed. The blackout blinds and curtain poles purchased. We have applied to Dulux for a grant of free paint under a community scheme they run.

The new chairs are due any day now, as is the storage container. Its all go. Please look out for notification of painting parties in the very near future.

Kenny Barr, Chairman, Isle Futures


Coming soon..... Scotland's most Southerly Cinema!

In 2009, the village hall will become Scotland's most Southerly cinema. Isle Futures has been awarded a grant of £10,000 from Scottish Screen’s Digital Projection Equipment Programme to provide state-of-the-art equipment at the Hall. This equipment will include high quality, high definition projection and surround sound, which can be used for cinema-style screenings, as well as for any other events or individual users that require the facility in the hall.

We will be planning a regular programme of features (not necessarily first release), documentaries, shorts, animated films etc., that are usually outside the scope of larger cinemas. There is a wealth of excellent material that is largely unseen, and there is an even larger wealth of material that many would like to see again – classic movies in particular. And, we can now plan to build new events and enhance existing attractions to the area - local film-based events and festivals; residential courses for beginners on video and audio-visual production, as well as music and radio production.

We have now created Machars Movies, a film society, a member of the British Federation of Film Societies, and has a committee comprising of representatives from communities throughout the Machars. They are working towards a opening night in April ( renovations and installation permitting) Watch these pages for more news.

We'll be adding some more information for you in the weeks to come. Check this page often for more details!

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