‘Old Grange’ legacy to Midhurst community projects

Comfortable seating for the Body and Soul group SUS-151002-133138001
Comfortable seating for the Body and Soul group SUS-151002-133138001

MORE than £10,500 has been handed out to community projects across the Midhurst and Petworth area in the name of the popular old Grange community centre.

Six schemes have benefitted after the first sums were handed out from the six figure community grant pot set up by trustees of the Grange Community Association.

The ‘significant’ sum was established with money raised from the sale of everything inside the old Grange before it was bulldozed last year.

In addition there was the residue of profits from its 35 years as Midhurst and Petworth’s community and leisure centre.

Trustee Graham Pooley told the Observer the aim was to give grants for capital expenditure on projects up to a maximum of £5,000 or half the cost of the project.

“We were able to give grants to all those who applied for capital sums. All the projects given this first support were all of really high community value and very worth while.”

The trustees have not released the sums given to the individual projects but a grant has gone to the Empire Hall at Graffham where villagers are spending £33,000 on essential upgrade works to the hall and drains, resurfacing the spring floor and refitting the kitchen.

A second grant has gone to the South Pond at Midhurst where a £65,000 restoration project is being carried out.

The £39,000 Lodsworth Croquet Club scheme has also received support where members are building a small pavilion to go with the new competition grade croquet lawns.

Also in Lodsworth the village hall and sports ground has received funding towards the £80,000 scheme to develop an all weather multi-purpose sports area with flood lighting.

The Methodist Hall at Midhurst was successful in its application for help to carry out its £80,000 project to refurbish the hall for wider community use and Fernhurst Table Tennis Club was given half the £600 cost to put ‘guards’ around the tables to help players develop their skills.

Trustees are now looking for new applications. Forms can be found at www.thegrange.org.uk. Applications close on March 15 and funds will be handed out in April.