PLANS to convert the former St Aldhelm’s Church in Sandleheath into a village hall are moving forward.

Sandleheath Village Hall Charitable Incorporated Organisation that manages Sandleheath Village Hall is busy raising funds and has a target of £150,000.

The charity’s trustees say they are “delighted” to have received two “considerable donations” recently from the Veolia Environmental Trust and the T H Russell Trust.

Coupled with grants from the Sandleheath Parish Council and New Forest District Council, funds raised locally, including the Waitrose Community Matters green token scheme, the charity has raised some £80,000, which they say is a “tremendous achievement”.

Trustee Mike Richardson said: “We are enormously grateful for the generous gifts we have received, both from grant-giving organisations and from the residents and businesses in our village community. Work will start on the initial phase of our refurbishment in September and we continue to make applications for additional funds, some of which are currently under consideration. When we have met our fundraising target, we’ll be able to complete the full hall renovation programme, and Sandleheath will have the contemporary village hall it deserves.”

The trustees are now in position to carry out an entire refurbishment of the building’s kitchen and toilet area, with a new roof, new equipment, and introducing disabled and baby changing facilities.

The plans for the village hall have been moving forward since residents voted in favour of pushing forward with the project back in April of last year.

Sandleheath Village Hall will remain open during the first refurbishment works and is available for hire. To book the hall or for more information email or call 07887 763707.

To donate to the Village Hall Fundraising Appeal,visit