Support for community groups and organisations

Farndale Village Hall – new village hall for rural communities in Ryedale

man at entrance of village hall holding door open
event day- group of t children outside entrance to community centre
inside of centre- empty

With the help of Community First Yorkshire, Farndale now has a brand new village hall, designed to meet the needs of its rural community.

What was the challenge?

Without a modern village hall as a community hub, people in Farndale were struggling with rural isolation. Trustees of Farndale Village Hall wanted to provide an accessible space and more services for the community. This meant securing funding to replace their current building, an old World War II wooden hut which was small and in very poor condition.

How did Community First Yorkshire help?

Maggie from Community First Yorkshire had been working with the trustees for some time and understood their frustration at having numerous funding bids declined.  Maggie put them in touch with an experienced bid writer at Community First Yorkshire, Leah, who has a deep understanding of how to articulate the needs of a remote rural community. Leah helped the trustees to strengthen their National Lottery bid to give it a greater impact.

James Thurtell, a trustee, recalls, “Leah’s comments were quite hard as she really took the bid apart, telling us what we did and didn’t do right. However, we recognised that her constructive criticism was spot on and changed the bid’s emphasis. With Community First Yorkshire’s support, we got the grant.”

While the trustees were thrilled to have secured a significant grant, they still had a £30,000 funding gap.  Again, Community First Yorkshire helped them to secure additional funds to complete the build.  The village hall had always been active in the

Community Buildings Network run by Community First Yorkshire and, through this, we’re able to secure extra help with policies, procedures and understanding building regulations. “Maggie was incredibly helpful, offering support just when we needed it,” reports James.

“Knowing that our help secured essential funding for Farndale Village Hall has been incredibly rewarding. We put community at the heart of everything we do, and to see Farndale’s thriving and vibrant community centre is inspirational.”
Maggie from Community First Yorkshire

About the organisation.

Farndale Village Hall is a registered charity and is run by a small committee of volunteers. There are no paid staff, but they have a bank of around  20 to 30 regular volunteers. Their aim is to reduce rural isolation and lack of services by providing an accessible space for all.

What does the future look like?

On 28 May 2019 around 200 people attended the opening of the new Farndale village hall. The village now has a modern, welcoming space where residents can provide community activities and start to work together to further address rural isolation.
Since its opening, the hall has been used by 50-60 people each week, a good and growing proportion of the local population. The building houses a library, replacing the mobile library service that stopped a few years ago. The hall plays host to the Women’s Institute, a weekly pool team and domino drives. Some nights the hall is a cinema and at others a theatre. Space wise it is multi-purpose and the committee is trying a range of activities to see which ones meet the community’s needs best including crafts, yoga, table tennis and community learning courses like food hygiene and first aid.

Do you need help with…
  • Securing income for your organisation or project?
  • Turning your ideas of becoming a new community organisation into a reality?
  • Benefitting from greater security as a Charitable Incorporated Organisation (CIO)?
  • Thinking about reviewing your organisation and planning ahead?
  • Understanding trustee’s legal roles and responsibilities?
  • Benefitting from a financial health check?

Our advisers can help. Call us today 01904 704177 or

How we can help you.

As a registered charity, we understand your needs. Our local advisers work across North Yorkshire and will come to you to ensure you get access to the best quality advice and guidance including funding advice, helping you set up as a community organisation, governance and trustees, finance support, marketing advice, and exploring ways to further develop your organisation.
If you know a community group, charity or social enterprise that needs some support to be even more successful, contact one of our friendly advisors on 01904 704177 or

Community Support North Yorkshire is funded by North Yorkshire County Council and NHS North Yorkshire.