Hall - Community divided

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The Horncastle News has a long tradition of articles about the Mareham le Fen ‘village hall’. In 1919 and 1921 two articles were published reporting on the fundraising and opening of the Mareham le Fen War Memorial Parish Hall.

Fast forward to 2017, almost 100 years, the article on the ‘blessing of the first sod’ appeared in which the community were told to ‘unite behind the new hall’!

The community has been divided by the new community centre concept caused by the estimated high cost and the proposed disposal of the existing War Memorial Parish Hall and Memorial Lawn.

The new hall is being built on a different site, one which is protected by the ENV20 planning policy and one which has a significant historical heritage dating from the Doomsday Book as an open green space and village green.

As a result of choosing another site, so a larger car park could be created, the registered War Memorial timber and steel hall (not a ‘tin hut’) will be discarded and the land sold by the charity.

The capital raised by selling the land for development will be used to fund the cost of the new charity run community centre.

Land that in 1920 had been dedicated by E Coupland, a member of the War Memorial committee at the time, as a memorial to those from Mareham Le Fen who died in the Great War (WW1).

Those in the village who are ‘not behind the new hall’, do not want to see the demolition of the Memorial Hall or the disposal of the Memorial Lawn.

Especially, during the period of Centenary Commemorations, they feel it is not right to neglect and then dispose of a building dedicated as a War Memorial because it is ‘no longer required’ or capitalise on land given to the community for an act of Remembrance in perpetuity.

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