The Trust would like to thank everyone who helped make the Westgate Hall Big Lunch such a success. Some 500 people joined us.  Of these nearly 100 were involved as volunteers, performers or stall holders. As for the 64 completed surveys, they too prove community interest in saving the Hall continues.  We now have over 600.

We’ve had very encouraging feedback about the day itself, our plans for the Hall, and the way we’ve run the campaign so far. The Workers of Art installation was very popular and inspiring, and there was a lot of interest in the display boards about the possible future of the Hall, the timeline and the architects’ 3D image of how the Hall could look refurbished. Children were thrilled by the activities: face painting, the ball pool, colouring in the drawing of the building, drumming and using the huge space in the main part of the Hall for dancing and general running around.

The music and entertainment programme made the day.  A big thank you to Ray Fielder for pulling it together and to all the Trust members, particularly those who performed and succeeded in getting people dancing! The panto, written and performed by the Unfinished Business Theatre Company, had everyone gripped. Most importantly, this jigsaw of activities encouraged cheerful conversation and laughter.  Meanwhile, the aroma of fresh coffee from Karl’s Good Food wafted around tables inside while that of savoury mouthwatering curry from Canterbury’s Curry Club around those outside. (Next year there shall be tea! Our apologies to all for our oversight!)

We are very grateful to at least five councillors who took the time to come to meet us. Our successful bid to KCC councillor Martin Vye for £1,000 to cover the cost of the lunch, and future community events, was also a huge morale boost. In addition, although the day wasn’t about fundraising, the Trust raised over £340 between stall holders’ contributions, the raffle, sales of apple juice, Veg Box cakes, and donations. We are delighted that, in the midst of this the Stella Rogers appeal raised over £300. Thank you all for your generosity.

This Thursday the Trust’s executive committee will meet council officials to discuss our bid to save Hall for use as a community venue. We are looking forward to meeting the new council officer in charge of the file. These discussions will shape the direction of our work.