The Emerald Hill Hall will power on into the future, thanks to a $25,000 grant.
The community building is almost 100 years old and Community Building Partnership Program grant will enable the Emerald Hill Progress Association to continue its renovations.
The grant will be put towards a new corrugated iron awning with guttering, new concrete slab floor with a new step onto the existing landing, handrails to access ramp, and lighting and security floodlights.
Association chair Scott McCalman said it was “wonderful news” for the community.
“It is very exciting,” he said.
Mr McCalman said the hall was utilised for pilates, yoga, grain meetings, fundraisers, Christmas parties, weddings, CWA meetings, music performances and fashion parades.
“This little hall has been on fire,” Mr McCalman said.
“There’s a function four days a week.”
“The last few years have been tough and the hall has become a fantastic focal point,” Mr McCalman said.
Over the last few years, the hall has received a fresh coat of paint, the stage has been re-floored, and a new kitchen and solar-powered exhaust fans have been installed.
As funds become available in the future, Mr McCalman said the association has plans to upgrade the electricity supply, and install air-conditioning.
Tamworth MP Kevin Anderson met with Scott McCalman at the hall on Wednesday and said he was glad to see funds flow into rural communities.
“This grassroots funding will directly help to support a vibrant and inclusive local community and this historic hall,” he said.
The hall’s history
The Emerald Hill Hall was built with community spirit after a meeting was called on August 20, 1922, to organise finance and voluntary working bees.
Ted Griffiths was elected chairman and it was agreed that one pound ($2) shares be sponsored in the district, with 158 shares taken out. The hall cost more than 600 pounds, including the piano and furniture.
The Emerald Hill Hall was officially opened on April 22, 1922, by Mrs EA Griffiths, wife of the hall building committee President. Sports were held all day and more than 100 couples danced the night away in the hall.
In 1927, the interior of the hall was lined at a cost of 75 pounds, with a kitchen erected the following year by the successful tenderer, Moorehouse and Son, at a cost of 64 pounds.
To raise funds a live pigeon shoot and ball were held on November 8, 1927, with each shooter paying five shillings for a nine-bird sweep. The prizemoney was five pounds.
At night Bridge’s Jazz Band supplied music and the charge for the ball was five shillings for men and three shillings for women.
Electricity was connected to the hall on October 7, 1954, after local district residents had contributed to the fund.
The railway line came to Emerald Hill in 1882 with the station built the following year.
Emerald Hill was within the Burburgate run and early selectors included Thomas Foreman, Richard Lumby, Alfred Lumby, Michael Hussey, Hugh Fraser, Simon Fraser and WG Baker and sons.