Regular Users 29 July 2020

To all our regular users
Copy Trustees


  • Harwell Village Halls are re-opening 1 Sep.
  • Lots of new conditions, please read and you will be deemed to have accepted them.  Summary in the email with link to full conditions on our website.
  • Will you be able to operate with these emergency conditions?
  • Please confirm that you are planning to restart, and indicate if your old slot is good, or will you need more time to cope with the extra requirements.

We plan to re-open the halls on 1 September 2020, ready for the next term.

Preparing for this has been difficult.  Government advice for community centres wasn’t published until the end of June.  Because we are multi-use, we have to take into account all the separate advice issued for each type of user, which sometimes conflicts with the advice for halls.  And anything we say now, is subject to change at any time. 

But now we’d like your feedback, and, if allowed, we will be happy to review the “rules” because we want to make it as easy as possible for you to run your classes.

We, the trustees, have to provide a COVID-secure environment, which practically includes:

  • Lots of sanitiser at entrances
  • Signage all over the place
  • Limited toilet access
  • Capacity guidelines
  • Limiting use of hall equipment (old chairs, few tables, avoid kitchen)
  • A risk assessment, which we share with you
  • And more, of course

In turn we ask you as hirer to follow the special COVID conditions that we have published on our website, which include

  • Being responsible for social distancing of everyone in your group. How you do this will depend on your activity and the relevant guidelines for it
  • Making sure everyone follows the COVID-secure guidelines which will be displayed throughout the hall
  • Managing start and end of sessions to keep groups apart
  • Managing hand-overs of children. Parents must wait outside and not come in at all.
  • Keeping note of who attends for Track and Trace
  • Preparing your own risk assessment
  • Taking away all rubbish
  • Cleaning
  • And more conditions, spelt out on the website – please read

Cleaning is going to be a challenge, because we do not have the resources for cleaning between each booking, or even every day.  We will continue to clean twice a week – all floors and all surfaces which are liable to be touched – door handles especially.

In turn we ask that you clean at the start and end of each booking.  For each room, that means wiping all door handles and push plates.  That’s hopefully only 3 or 4 doors – outer entrance doors, inner door to your room, and toilet doors, plus a wipe round the toilet.  You will also need to include window handles and emergency exit door push bars and handles if they are going to be opened.

Additionally you should wipe clean any equipment you use.  Apart from stuff specific to your group, that will mean tables and chairs.  We plan to leave out the old solid folding chairs, and only enough tables to meet needs.

Note that our newer blue chairs have upholstered seats and backs and are potentially difficult to clean and sterilise.  Initially we will lock the chair cupboards, but in time everyone may be more relaxed and we can find a way to safely spray them to kill off any lurking virus.

Toilets  Our plan for toilets is to ask Cherry Hall to use the toilet in the corner of the room, and Orchard Hall to use the disabled toilet in the main corridor.  The main toilets will be for emergency use only.  We know this won’t be easy, especially when you have groups of children, and will welcome alternative suggestions which make it easy to see if a facility is in use, limit use to one at a time, and reduce the amount of cleaning that will be needed.

This is already a long email, and it’s only the highlights of the re-opening plan.

Please now read the material posted on our website, especially the terms and conditions.  Many halls will be asking for specific signatures to confirm your agreement.  We will operate as we have over the last few years by stating on every email that by proceeding with your booking you are deemed to have accepted all our terms and conditions.

I’ll start updating the booking calendar in the next few days.  Slots will be shown as reserved until you confirm that you will be restarting.

Please note that until government guidance changes we will not be allowing private parties to go ahead.

Finally, best wishes for the new season.  We all hope you will be able to get up and running again within all the restricted circumstances made necessary by the pandemic.  And if you can, have a relaxing summer.

Thank you for using Harwell Village Hall.


David Marsh

Harwell Village Hall Booking Administration
Chapel House, High St. Harwell

t:  01235 835 430     |     m: 0752 723 6561


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Terms: By proceeding with your booking you are deemed to have accepted the terms and conditions for the hire of the hall, including the COVID emergency conditions