HISTORY

Acklington Village Hall is a very significant building. It has always been extremely well used for meetings as well as for sporting and social events. It is also the venue used by various local clubs and it continues to be one of the main centres of social activity in the parish. Before the hall was built meetings took place in the school. They had what they called “Parish Meetings” and it appears from the minutes written at the time that most of the discussions concerned:
the state of the footpaths; the water supply; scavenging; safety of bridges; road-signs; parish celebrations (e.g. Jubilee / Coronation) and the provision of a village hall.
The Village Hall was originally due to open in February 1924 but it was completely wrecked by a gale just a few days before the official opening ceremony. The following extract is taken from a newspaper article written at the time.
NEW BUILDING COLLAPSES IN GALE
A gloom has been cast over the village of Acklington by the blowing over of its newly erected War Memorial Hall early last Saturday morning, by the terrific gale which swept over the district. The hall only needed some slight painting inside for completion, and was to have been handed over to the Committee on February 5th, Monday first, when the opening ceremony was to have been performed by Sir Leonard Milburn.
At midnight on Friday, when a constable passed the building, it was all right, so that the catastrophe must have occurred at some time between that hour and 7 o’clock on Saturday morning, when the hall was found to be in ruins by Mr. J. K. Waggot, who lives at the Post Office, the next building to the hall.
The hall is almost completely raised to the ground, only the gable ends remaining. It was in a very exposed position, and stood broadside on to Friday night’s gale, which is declared by the keeper of the Coquet Lighthouse to be the severest experienced in the district for a considerable time.
Early on Monday, a party of Acklington men and lads commenced helping the builders to make order out of the debris on the site of the building, removing broken slates and clearing bricks, etc. The damage is estimated at well over £400. A lucky circumstance was that £30 worth of chairs, which had just been purchased, had not been put into the hall.
The cost of the hall was £800 and the money was raised from public subscriptions, whist drives, bazaars, entertainments, etc. Mr Turner, retired schoolmaster and secretary of the Memorial Hall Fund, said he was quite satisfied the workmanship was all right. The fault lay with the night.
We can only imagine how it felt for those in the parish who had worked and laboured for years to raise funds to get that hall and then found that just when their hopes were going to be realised that the whole structure was lying in ruins. Thankfully they decided that the hall had to be rebuilt and they set about raising yet more funds. The committee gave instructions for a building of much greater stability that the original one and in June 1925 all their efforts were rewarded when Lady Milburn officially opened this hall. It has been extremely well used ever since.
Throughout the sixties there was a great deal of maintenance work done (redecoration, new heating system, toilet repairs, new furniture, etc.) and discussions about such items dominated the village hall meetings, as recorded in the minutes.
Village hall activities during the seventies included: ballet lessons, keep fit classes, Whist Drives, coffee mornings, Youth Club evenings, dances, as well as regular meetings of the Parish Council / W.I. / Young Wives Group / Bowls Club / PCC / Autumn Club. The school also used the village hall during a period of school alterations.
The kitchen and supper room were altered and modernised during the eighties. Working parties of prison inmates helped to clear up the village hall grounds. An active village badminton club ran throughout the eighties. The number on the village hall committee was increased to 12.
In 2001 a group calling themselves ACT (Acklington Community Team) was formed and organised numerous events for the community…. as a result the village hall was used nearly every day and given a new lease of life. Extra activities included: sports club, history club, toddler group, ceilidh’s, sales, treasure hunts, “village tidy” days, dance classes, quiz nights, pantomimes… all of which helped to increase revenue for the village hall committee.
At the present time the hall continues to be used almost every day for meetings, functions and club nights. It is a real focal point of the community. The village hall committee has recently improved the village hall by installing a disabled toilet and redecorating throughout. The village hall committee has acquired land to the west side of the hall which will be used as a community garden. 
They have also received funding from donations, grants and fund-raising activities to demolish the WWII built small room at the rear of the hall and re-build a new back room (Guyzance Room) which can be used independent of the main hall complete with disabled toilet facilities and separate access through the patio doors. 
In late 2013/early 2014 the archaic central heating system was ripped out and new modern energy-friendly central hating installed.  At the same time the kitchen was gutted and a fully-fitted kitchen installed complete with oven/grill, microwave and refrigerator.
Plans are still ongoing to improve and enhance the village hall even further along with landscaping the Community garden.