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Virtual Book Club
Book Club (albeit 'virtual' at this current time) has now again in September. We will be in touch as soon as we know what arrangements will be in place regarding meeting at the hall but for now we will continue continuing with our virtual club for the time being.
This month's book for Book Club is The Thursday Murder Club by Richard Osman.
We hope you enjoy it, and we'll see you all in January.
Have a great Christmas. Stay safe.
Pride of Place Nomination
IPB Awards – Pride of Place Nomination - www.prideofplace.ie.
Lisburn & Castlereagh City Council nominated Aghalee Village Hall for this award on 14th September, Pauline and Fiona took part in a Zoom interview with members of Co-operation Ireland, IPB judges Tom and Alison Dowling and with support from Victoria Jackson LCCC. The interview went very well and now we just wait and see if we have been successful or not. IPB Pride of Place Awards is an all-island competition that acknowledges the work that communities are doing all over the island of Ireland. The competitors are all nominated by local Councils and the competition focus is about people coming together to shape, change and improve daily lives in their communities. We should hear in November whether or not we have been successful. Thank you to Lisburn & Castlereagh City Council for nominating us.
Flower Beds - Update
Pauline met with Stephen Mackle, Council Maintenance Manager regarding the planting around the village. Local Council is not carrying out planting for the near future, nor are they providing the plants. After some discussion with the committee AVH has undertaken to pay for plants for the Millennium Garden and Coronation Gardens and is working in partnership with the Council which is placing the order on our behalf. The local community will have to strip out the beds and replant once the ordered plants and bulbs arrive. The cost will be in the region of £500. Once plants arrive a call will be put out for volunteers to help carry out the planting.
Wildflower Meadow - former BT Site
The new wildflower meadow has been beautiful this year. This was created from the former BT site field under the Aghalee Village Renewal Scheme. Seats have been placed and it is hoped later in the year that a bin will be provided and possibly a path into and around the area will be created by local Council, funds permitting.
Before the Covid lockdown, some members of the upholstery class decided to take on the task of refurbishing the red fabric covered seating at the hall. The fabric had perished in the sun coming through various windows. There were many different types of fabric available but not enough to cover everything the same so it was decided largely to mix n match, resulting in some lovely colour combinations for the 30 chairs.
Many thanks to Alison Ince, Alison Gawith, Maggie Gundry for all their
What's On in Aghalee Village Hall from Sept 2020
Almost all the regular groups have restarted at the hall. The Youth Group may reopen before Christmas, keep checking our page. Book Club will continue on-line and Needlecraft Club will review the situation in January 2021.
AGE NI Group Restarted
AgeNI Aghalee group has restarted in the village hall. If you or your friends or relatives would like to join the group, please contact Gillian on 077339 12876 or email Gillian.Thompson@ageni.org.
Please be assured the hall is clean and safe with all social distancing and mitigation measures in place per PHA requirements.
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That's the Winter/Spring planting all done. Thanks to Betty and Stephen Clydesdale, Chris and Pauline Buller and Ken Greer for all the work. If you look very closely you will see the 1,500+ bulbs also planted - and if you see us hobbling about in the next few days you now know why!
Community Spirit Event
Saturday 19th September
Lisburn & Castlereagh City Council provided a grant to host a Community Spirit Event to thank those volunteers who took part in the initial Covid emergency and also for those who sorted out the flower beds throughout the village.
The Covid Support group organised this for Saturday 19th September at 6.00pm. The venue was AVH car park which was set out to comply with all Public Health Agency/NI Executive requirements for safety and social distancing. Car parking was provided by the Free Presbyterian Church and food was provided by Graham’s Chip shop in the village.
Many thanks to the Council and Aghalee Village Hall for providing funding towards this event, and to the Covid Support Hub Volunteers for organising it.
In the summer we were advised by the Council Parks and Amenities that due to the Covid crisis, the Council would not be providing staff to plant out villages and towns in the Council area.
The plants had already been purchased and we were asked if we could provide volunteers to plant out the area at the Millennium Garden. After a very hurried call for volunteers a number of people met on Saturday 20th June and sorted out the beds. They are now planted out and many thanks to all who took part. A few weeks later when driving past Coronation Gardens it was discovered there was another bed not planted. It had been thought all three beds were planted with roses but it appears was not the case. Despite contacting the Council for help, there were no plants left so unfortunately, this bed will have to be left unplanted, which is a real shame.
There were 12 volunteers in 5 family pods who cleaned up the beds and planted them out and another 6 or so volunteers who later in the year weeded and tended the plants.
Everyone enjoyed the project as there was much banter and some learning involved; the children who helped really enjoyed themselves. While some of the participants were skilled in horticulture, a number had minimal experience. The groups worked very well together while socially distanced to help and explain about plants and how they could work together to achieve a pleasing result for the local community. Depending on how the Council will be working in the near future, there might be scope for future environmental/horticultural projects.
We couldn't be more delighted to announce that Pauline Buller has been awarded a BEM (Medal of the Order of the British Empire) in the Queen's Birthday Honours List.
Pauline works tirelessly for our community and is well known and well liked. She is responsible for many of the improvements that have been made in Aghalee in recent years.
Having moved to Aghalee in 1979, Pauline first became acquainted with the work of Aghalee Village Hall whilst playing badminton with Aghalee Badminton Club from 1982. When she became Club Rep in 1985, little did she know that it would be the start of a long and illustrious stint at the forefront of village life!
Pauline believes one can’t live in a village and not become part of the community, so she immersed herself in village life and has made some very good and long lasting friendships.
She became Aghalee Village Hall Secretary 25 years ago and has been in this post almost continuously since then. Pauline has been the person responsible for seeking out grants for courses, classes and activities, all for the benefit of the local and wider community and since 1998 has been instrumental in securing more than £400,000 through grants.
Pauline has always actively worked with the people on the committees which form the Aghalee Village Hall team, to lobby for improvements in the area, reach out to people and help provide a wide and varied range of activities at the hall for the benefit of the community. The local community, in turn, has been very supportive of the work carried out by all members of the Village Hall.
Pauline has been married to Chris since 1977 and they have two adult children and two grandchildren. Now semi-retired after a career in Credit Control and Finance, she also finds time to devote time to her family as well as pursuing her own interests of gardening, reading and needlework. She looks forward to many more years of working for the community.
COVID UPDATE - FOOD PARCELS
If you can't work for the next 4 weeks, or if you've been made redundant or are struggling with reduced income due to Covid, please get in touch. You still have all the usual bills to pay and we can help with food while you do this. Don't feel embarrassed - no judgement here - just a helping hand if you need it. Your request will be treated in strictest confidence.