Welcome to the Dunlop Village Hall Website.
The hall is situated in the village’s Main Street, acting as a focal point for village life. It is managed by the community, for the community, and plays host to a wide variety of educational, recreational and leisure activities, as well as concerts and private functions.
The history of the hall
Dunlop Village Hall is situated in Main Street in the centre of the village within a designated conservation area. The original hall, the part now known as the Bowlers’ Hall, was built around 1880 of whinstone. A large brick addition, the main hall, was built in 1924, extending the building along Kirkland Road. From the outset, the Hall was owned and managed by the Community, but in 1934 ownership was transferred to Ayr County Council and with subsequent local and regional government reorganisations it is now owned by East Ayrshire Council.
The Dunlop and Lugton Regeneration Group was established with a view to regenerating, improving and revitalising the communities of Dunlop and Lugton. After extensive consultation with local residents, it became clear that the best way forward was to take over the management of the village hall from East Ayrshire Council so that it could be extended, renovated and improved, and become a focal point for village life. To achieve this end, Dunlop and District Community Company was set up in 2002. The Company successfully negotiated a lease of the village hall from East Ayrshire Council for a period of 25 years (with an option to extend it for a further 10 years) at a peppercorn rent, thus bringing the hall back under community management.
In 2004 a new Board of Directors was appointed and over the next two years the Company raised £500,000 to renovate and upgrade the hall including the cafe extension. A new kitchen, improved toilet facilities and disabled access were incorporated and the building was re-opened in January 2007 with a celebratory Opening Festival weekend.
At the first Annual General Meeting of the Company, Mr Tom Mackie intimated that he would like to donate a new weathervane to replace the one that had been lost during past renovations of the tower. Tragically, Tom died before his wish could be carried out, but Mrs Mackie was keen to see her husband’s wish fulfilled.
A competition was held among the pupils of Dunlop Primary School to design the new weathervane. The children excelled with imaginative drawings and ingenious models making the selection of a winner a challenge for the judges. The winner was Amy Russell. The winning design was manufactured by Burnhouse Engineering and erected on the tower in the Summer of 2008. A small plaque in the vestibule of the hall commemorates the event.