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Church House, South Tawton, Devon, UK





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News Archive 9

Church House: First year after restoration     David Youle 1st November 2006

Summary of use from 30th November 2005

  Public Open Days
Painting group
  Local meetings
Exhibitions (days)
Student research
  Quiet Days, Retreats
Church Ale
  Other lettings
Encounters *
* Encounters are evening illustrated talks and musical events

Visitors during the Open Days totalled 1132 (April to October)

Users of Church House include:

Moor Futures, Dartmoor National Park Authority, Dartmoor Preservation Association, Royal Marines, Okehampton Museum Trustees, Devon County Council(TA Induction), Moorland Pets, Devonshire Association (Buildings Section), Folk Festival, Parochial Church Council, Heritage Open Days, Safari Supper, Carnival Committee, Pre-School Committee, Heavenly Friday, Riding Club, Dowsing Group, Junior Church, Flower Festival, Poetry and Painting, Painting workshops, Music workshop, St. David’s PCC, Exeter Diocesan Prayer School, Julian Meeting.



Cygnet Theatre Co, Jazz evenings, Poetry readings, Music club meetings.
We hope to extend the use of the upper room for exhibitions of crafts and for the work of  local artists.

The committee are delighted with the use that has been made of the restored Church House, and are encouraged by the bookings for 2007 that are being arranged as far ahead as mid July.

Moorland Paws @ Church House      Pete Kilgannon 21st October 2006
banner outside Church House
what any thirsty dog would want
I found a mouse
Not for me, thank you
Giving advice
xmas shopping?
On the shelf
Where does it all lead?
Look at that
Cat's stuff
Doggie bar
Denise and friend
just browsing
Curtain up
Michelle and customer
Cat's treats
Wont you buy me anything?
Read these then
(Raspberry) tea break
Bone break
Over 1000 Visitors!      David Youle 8th October2006

We have reached over 1000 visitors on the two days a week when we have been open to the public – Sundays and Wednesdays. This is since we opened in April 2006. The full range of bookings and activities is mostly posted on the website, but we already have days booked up until July 2007!

Painting groups love the building and seem likely to expand to 3 times a week, whilst we are working on increasing the number of exhibitions held in the upper rooms. We intend to be part of the “Nine Days of Art” next year, and are about to see if grants are available for staging other art or craft exhibitions of local work. 

The monthly Encounters have had a varied response, but earlier this month a Village Voices concert was so well attended that people were standing at the back of the hall. The website Events Programme shows the next few Encounters, but we have plans for RSPB and the Met Office next year, and expect to continue with a good and varied programme.

It is good that local use can be fitted in, with birthday parties, celebrations of various kinds and with some business projects beginning to come in. 
Devon Curriculum Services have booked a series of days – well into next Spring, and the 2007 diary is beginning to fill up!

Several groups have booked Church House for Retreats and Quiet Days, and have found the proximity of the church most helpful. 

All this use has meant that we have ordered more tables and equipment, although we are constrained by storage space. The building is universally admired by all who use or visit, and seems to be standing up well the pressure of regular bookings.  The Contractors have been recently to deal with final snags before the final payment is made in November. We have added a small skirting in the lower room to protect the delicate lime plaster which has been damaged in a few places.  The Management Committee hopes that with the building having dried out thoroughly over the course of the summer, we will not have such large heating bills this winter. However we managed to keep the users quite warm, whilst protecting the medieval fabric.

It is so encouraging to have Church House used to such an extent, even if it does mean daily visits to move furniture around!

Further Information
Please contact David Youle

          Phone      01837 840418
           or click here -       Email