One of the district’s last remaining community-owned halls is celebrating its 60th anniversary in style, with a $90,000 facelift to replace its roof, ceiling and lighting.
Although built of solid concrete and structurally sound, the Matakana Hall roof was showing signs of its age, with damp, mildew and water damage causing problems. New roofing iron, insulation and ceiling tiles were needed, as well as modern LED lighting to replace old fluorescent strips.
The hall committee realised this was a job that was well beyond standard self-funded maintenance and improvements, so external help was sought and community grants were received from Foundation North ($30,000) and the Lottery Grants Board (almost $59,000). The work was completed last month.
The original Matakana Hall was built in 1880 as a result of the local farming community raising funds for the land and a deposit, but it burned down five years later. The replacement hall lasted until 1959, when it was also destroyed by fire, but thanks to the dedication of the community, was rebuilt by the end of the same year. It remains one of the few non-council owned community halls in the region.
Matakana Hall Society secretary Penny Shelbourne said a strong community spirit endured and the hall and two smaller rooms were in regular use for a wide range of activities, including sales and markets, community group meetings, table tennis, infant development, dance, yoga, fitness, music, choir and floral art.
“The hall is a thriving space used by people, young and old, from as far afield as Puhoi, Leigh and Wellsford,” she said.
She said the society wished to thank Foundation North and the Lottery Grants Board, as well as BBMK
Commercial, Matakana ITM and Dynamics Financial Services, for making such important improvements possible.
For hall bookings, please call Beverly on 422 7590, or Penny on 027 323 8747 for general enquiries.