Wednesday, 6 March 2019
Doors open, 6 pm; Meeting starts, 6.30 pm
A little history, 1924-2019
The Memorial Hall in Geldeston was opened on 7 June 1924 by Major P. Dowson of Santa Barbara, California. The building was a free gift to the parish from Miss Elizabeth Dowson and her late sister and it was built chiefly with materials provided by pulling down two of the old maltings at the Staithe (Rowan Craft boatyard).
The opening ceremony, reported in the East Suffolk Gazette (as the Beccles and Bungay Journal was then known), was attended “by 150 villagers and many members of the Dowson family”. In the decades that followed the hall was used for a great variety of purposes: dances, wedding breakfasts, whist drives, children’s parties, amateur dramatics (including Nativity Plays), variety performances and film shows. Since 1943 it has been the prized venue of the annual Produce Show.
It is the place where the parish council always meets, a polling station for local and national elections, and the natural focus for any major discussion — including one passionate debate about demolishing the hall, selling off the land and building a new hall somewhere else in the parish.
Eighty-five years on, thanks to a variety of sponsors and donors, and the tireless efforts of the committee and its chair, our Hall has been thoroughly upgraded and modernised, inside and out, and a variety of public and private activities now take place there.
The redecorated and renovated hall
(classes, meetings, film shows, etc)
The transformed kitchen
Come admire our refurbished hall!
Wednesday, 6 March, 6.30 pm