CHOLSEY GREAT HALL
Cholsey Community Development Trust (CCDT) is a company limited by guarantee and a registered charity (Registered Charity No: 1154165. Registered Company No: 07114119). The Board of Trustees is comprised of 10 volunteer members from the local community, representing a broad range of skills and interests, and also includes representatives from Cholsey Parish Council and Soha Housing Association.
The CCDT is responsible for managing and hiring the Great Hall, Fair Mile, Cholsey OX10 9GW for the benefit of the local community, and the Board is assisted by a part-time Administrator. The Great Hall premises include a large hall with fully equipped stage, a meeting room, fully equipped kitchen, a large lobby, and the CCDT’s office. The Great Hall is a Grade II Listed building, which was completely refurbished for community use from 2014.
The CCDT is committed to working to the values, objectives and procedures set out in South Oxfordshire District Council’s Licensing Policy (Licensing Act 2003). Through this Operating Schedule and our Hiring Agreement, we aim to promote the four licensing objectives of:
• Prevention of crime and disorder
• Public Safety
• Prevention of public nuisance
• Protection of children from harm
Our Operating Schedule and our Hiring Agreement terms reflect the location of the Great Hall and its proximity to our residential neighbours, and our concern to balance the interests of neighbours and those of our community and Hall users. Since we opened in 2014, there has been consistent dialogue and consultation with our residential neighbours about appropriate activity for the Hall, and the measures we have put in place to minimise disturbance, whilst also ensuring that the Hall is well used for the benefit of the local community.
2.Prevention of Crime and Disorder
The Great Hall is primarily for community use, for events such as the village pantomime, dances, fetes, coffee mornings, etc. It is also available for indoor sports, such as badminton and table tennis. It may also be hired for private parties by local residents, including for children’s parties, and by local businesses and charities for business meetings, A.G.Ms, etc. Children’s play groups and mother and baby groups also take place there.
All bookings are controlled by the CCDT Administrator, who meets with potential hirers and who ensures that they are familiar with the terms of the Hiring Agreement. In particular, Hall users are asked not to congregate outside the Hall doors or near to residents’ private areas, and not to make a noise when leaving the building. Smokers are asked to move away from the building towards the Cricket field. Most events are not late night events.
If any complaints are received from neighbours, these are fully investigated and reported to the Board. If complaints are substantiated, then the hirer may forfeit their Damage Deposit.
The Great Hall has been refurbished to a high standard, with full accessibility for disabled people. Lighting both inside and outside is good, and the access areas are well lit. The fire exits are properly signed.
The Hall is fitted with all necessary fire protection and smoke detection equipment, which is regularly serviced.
The kitchen has been provided to a good standard for community use, all appliances are maintained, and are subject to regular cleaning, and inspection by our Administrator. Advice has been sought from South Oxfordshire District Council’s Food Safety team.
At the time of writing (May 2016), we are considering the installation of CCTV at our main entrance and at the main fire exit.
As the Hall is a Listed building, it has retained the large sliding doors to the main hall, which have been a feature since the hospital was built. There is a potential trip hazard associated with the floor runner for the doors, and warning signs are in use. Similarly if the doors are closed, there is a small access door which has a small step. Again this is signposted, and is stewarded at CCDT events, especially if children are present.
3a.Alcohol Consumption and Harm Reduction
Our Hiring Agreement terms are intended to control the use of alcohol on the premises, and hirers are responsible for ensuring that proper controls are in place, in particular to prevent under-age drinking or excessive drinking.
The CCDT is committed to helping to promote healthy life-styles, by offering a range of sporting, and leisure activities. Mindfulness and other well-being courses are also offered on-site. The CCDT has a particular responsibility to promote a ‘green lifestyle’ and to reduce the single-occupancy use of vehicles.
The CCDT uses its booking arrangements and hiring terms to ensure that the occupancy limits are adhered to, and that room lay-outs keep fire exits clear at all times.
3d.Health and Safety
The CCDT has a Health and Safety Policy in place. Risk Assessments are always carried out for any CCDT events. Full insurances are in place for CCDT events and activities.
4.Prevention of Public Nuisance
Since the Hall opened in 2014, the CCDT has undertaken considerable extra works to the building, in order to minimise potential nuisance to our residential neighbours. We hired an Acoustic Consultant to provide a full report of measures that would assist with this.
In light of this report, we have:
• Installed a noise limiter
• Constructed a second lobby to the foyer to minimise noise as people leave the premises
• Installed acoustic ‘clouds’ and baffles in all public areas
• Amended our Hiring Agreement
Our Hiring Agreement terms are intended to minimise disturbance to our neighbours, and hirers are requested to keep doors and windows closed at all times.
Our kitchen is provided with a suitable extractor for its usual usage, and the outlet is away from the residential properties, as there is an access path between the kitchen and the nearest home.
Smokers are requested to move to the Cricket Pavilion, which is well away from the residential properties.
Hirers are requested to bag and remove from site all their own waste and litter from events. Any failure to do so, results in forfeiting part or all of the Damage Deposit.
The CCDT removes all its own waste from the office and from any events.
The CCDT employs a cleaner, who is responsible for ensuring that the premises are kept in a clean and fit condition.
Almost all CCDT events and hirings take place between 8am and 11pm. Any activities planned outside these hours (e.g. New Year’s Eve event) would be subject to separate discussions with the Licensing Authority.
4e. Disturbance from Customers
As outlined above, our Hiring Agreement is intended to minimise disturbance to our neighbours, and any complaints are always fully investigated and reported to the Board.
4f.Deliveries and Waste Collection
At the time of writing (May 2016), the CCDT does not have external waste bins. Recycling and other waste is bagged inside the premises, and removed.
There are 40 parking spaces allocated for Great Hall use, in four bays along the spine road adjacent to the Hall. The Hiring Agreement requires hirers to manage parking for their event, to minimise disturbance to our neighbours. For CCDT events, parking marshals are provided where larger attendance is expected.
As part of the CCDT’s Green Travel Plan, Cholsey residents are encouraged to walk, cycle and use public transport wherever possible.
5.Protection of Children from Harm
The CCDT has a Child Protection Policy in place, and our Administrator has followed the on-line training provided by the Oxfordshire Safeguarding Children Board. Some Board members also have professional knowledge of Child Protection issues.
Unaccompanied children are only permitted on the premises for properly regulated activities, such as Children’s Centre, Youth Club or Play Association events, where professionals are supervising the children. In all other instances, children must be accompanied by appropriate adults.
A separate schedule to the Hiring Agreement relates to the provision of films or entertainment, and the requirement to ensure that no age-inappropriate material is shown, using the BBFC standards, or publicising the age limit where live entertainment is taking place.
A separate schedule to the Hiring Agreement relating to Alcohol Consumption provides a similar requirement with respect to under-age drinking, and also to arrangements for age verification and proxy sales.
6. Licensing Hours
The CCDT operates its own events and activities with a closing time of 11pm. The Hiring Agreement also places this requirement on hirers.
Where any late night events are planned, the CCDT will consult with residential neighbours.
7.Large Scale Events
The CCDT does not routinely organise large events, where more than 499 people are expected.
Occasional outdoor events, such as the village Bonfire Night, may attract more than this number of people, depending on the weather. Separate Risk Assessments and insurance are in place for any such event. Outdoor events are regulated by the Premises Licence for the Cholsey Cricket Club.
8.Designated Premises Supervisor
The CCDT’s Administrator is the Designated Premises Supervisor, using the CCDT’s normal mobile phone number, which is clearly displayed inside and outside the Great Hall.
The Great Hall and the Cricket Pavilion are the only community buildings at Fair Mile/Cholsey Meadows. There are no other licensed premises nearby.
It is intended to review this Operating Schedule every 3 years, or whenever there is a change to the Licensing Authority’s policy and requirements.