Stanley Halls group celebrates “winning” the Lottery – twice

The Stanley People’s Initiative has received more than £18,000 in grants from the Heritage Lottery Fund to assist in establishing the long-term future of Stanley Halls in South Norwood.

A detail from Stanley Halls, which local residents are helping to revive and re-use

A detail from Stanley Halls, which local residents are helping to revive and re-use

The Stanley People’s Initiative is a group of local people committed to regenerate the historic local venue and its neighbourhood. Stanley Halls is a complex of buildings built between 1903 and 1911 and comprises an art gallery, main hall or theatre, committee room and two assembly halls. SPI is in the process of forming a Charitable Incorporated Organisation, having taken on the buildings from Croydon Council.

The funding has come in two grants: the first, £9,600, is from an Heritage Lottery Fund start-up funding stream to work on feasibility plans for improving access and facilities in Stanley Halls as well as restore historic parts of the building. This funding bid was supported by Croydon Council with a small grant to enable Stanley People’s Initiative to start working with the borough’s planning and regeneration team.

SPI has also received £8,500 from HLF’s Catalyst small grants scheme in order to develop fundraising skills across the organisation in order to be able to support the management of Stanley Halls. This programme forms part of a broader initiative between the Department of Culture Media and Sport, Arts Council England, and Heritage Lottery Fund designed to diversify the income streams of arts and heritage organisations.

“We are taking Stanley Halls into community management and aim to make it a vibrant hub for SE25,” Debbie Challis, SPI’s fundraising officer, said.

“This wonderful resource has been underused and we are working on changing that through re-opening it as soon as we can. These grants will enable us to commission advice from the professionals involved in the upkeep and development of historic buildings in order to present fuller plans and ideas to our local community.”

The residents’ group hopes to present proposals for Stanley Halls to the community in the New Year.

Last month’s Lives of Stanley Halls: Theatricals, Community and Entertainment project, funded by another Heritage grant, has uncovered a range of personal histories about the buildings and the area, from suffragettes to bingo, dog shows to weddings, and will now form the basis of an exhibition which will be on show at open days at Stanley Halls and will be touring public spaces South Norwood in early 2014.

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1 Response to Stanley Halls group celebrates “winning” the Lottery – twice

  1. Dave King says:

    Used to walk through this gallery every day to get to class. Stanley Tech 1955/59. Dave King. Knobby.

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