Season’s Greetings!

Season's Greetings

When, this time last year, we wished you all a happy Christmas and looked forward to a new year, we couldn’t have imagined how the world would change.

Each year we look back at the changes that have taken place in the village – as well as the country at large – but the idea that the pub and village hall would be closed for a significant part of the year was certainly not something we had contemplated – or at least not due to a brand new virus.

The committee at the village hall have been very proactive during the year, not only in ensuring that the hall met COVID-19 regulations and was able to reopen with robust measures in place, but they have also taken the time to improve the hall. As well as a very deep clean, the hall has seen the installation of new energy-saving lighting, thanks to a grant from the National Lottery. The hall has also been successful in funding 40 new comfortable chairs thanks to money from the Tirgwynt Wind Farm Community Grant. 

Obviously, the hall has been used much less in 2020 than in more usual times, and we hope that people will support new events that will hopefully come on stream in 2021 – especially as the world returns to some sort of normality following the roll out of vaccinations.

The Cross Guns too has had an interesting year to say the least. With the lockdown affecting the hospitality sector so badly, Maureen and her team at the pub have had to do what many others have had to do and offer takeaway when they could, and open as per the guidelines. The ‘Friends of Cross Guns Pant‘ Facebook group, which was set up last year, is still there if villagers want to join.

We also reported this time last year that plans were progressing for work on Schoolhouse Bridge over the Montgomery Canal between Pant and Crickheath. If you have been down that way, you will see that a new temporary roadway was built this year to enable the road to be redirected to let building work commence – hopefully in 2021. The Friends of the Montgomery Canal launched a new website during the year at www.themontgomerycanal.org.uk which has much information about the canal and its restoration.

We were lucky in Pant, at the beginning of the pandemic, that a number of people in the village got together to set up the Pant Coronavirus Support Group. This bunch of fantastic volunteers has been there throughout the year to help local people needing assistance, whether that was with food and medicines deliveries, getting to medical appointments or just a friendly voice at the end of the phone. A huge thank you to everyone in our community who has been able to help.

Many of us have increasingly used online services such as Zoom and Skype for social contact and meetings, and even more have turned to online shopping. Pant Today remains a place where local business can advertise (only £20 a year). Not only will your support help us keep this village website going but it can help your business gain exposure to local customers. Please consider an advert with us.
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May we wish you Happy Christmas and Season’s Greetings!

News from Pant Memorial Hall

Pant Memorial Hall in winter

When the hall reopened in September, we knew that a second closure was not impossible and had made plans accordingly.

This planning paid off on the announcement of the November lockdown, hopefully without too much inconvenience for our hirers. The hall is reopening under ‘tier 2’ restrictions on Wednesday December 2nd.

Among many lessons this year; a closed hall does not mean no work for the committee of unpaid volunteers. We discovered how much we can get done over Zoom, email and telephone. The Thursday evening ‘reopening subcommittee’ clocked up 14 video calls, and this group continues to ‘meet’ fortnightly to manage the ever-changing situation.

Sadly many of our previous hirers cannot return at the moment, although some events are possible with the new measures. We’ve had some lovely feedback from hirers and attendees, which has made all the hard work worthwhile.

Plans for our socially-distanced poppy placing were also stopped by the lockdown. Nonetheless we were still able to put up a display inside the lobby and also around the artwork. Thank you to one of our trustees for arranging all this, which allowed passers-by to ‘pause to remember’ in safety.

Pant Memorial Hall in winter

The hall came out of the first lockdown with a greatly improved lighting system, funded by the National Lottery. Some will consider that an even bigger improvement will be 40 new padded chairs. These will have wipe-clean upholstery so will be usable under the restrictions. Thanks to the Tirgwynt Wind Farm Community Fund for funding these. The purchase has also been supported by the sale of 40 of the old chairs, plus donations from the Calor crowdfunder earlier in the year. We are hoping to have our new chairs in a few weeks.

The committee wishes everyone a happy Christmas and a peaceful and healthy new year. 2021 will be the 99th year of operation for the hall. Thank you to all who have supported us, and here’s hoping for better times for all of us.

To contact us: (open or closed!)

Marking Remembrance Sunday

Pant Memorial Hall with Amistice plaques
Poppy

This year, Remembrance Sunday falls on Sunday 8th November and COVID-19 will significantly affect how it is observed in Pant and the surrounding areas.

The annual Act of Remembrance that has been organised at Pant Memorial Hall in recent years will not be going ahead inside the hall due to the current pandemic restrictions, but a local resident has stepped in to put a display in the entrance hallway for anyone who might like to see the memorials held at the hall for individual quiet reflection. Unfortunately, access to the hall will not be possible, but local people are welcome to look through the hall doors to see the memorial and poppy display.

If you would like to attend, please observe social distancing and bring a facemask, unless you are exempt.

Plaque in Pant Memorial Hall

The marble tablet in Pant Memorial Hall was initially in Pant United Reform Chapel and records the names of those fallen in the Second World War. The hall also displays a copy of a Roll of Honour for those who fell in the First World War. Details about the war memorials in Pant Memorial Hall can be found on the hall’s website – https://pantmemorialhall.org.uk/war-memorials-and-commemorations-at-pant

On Sunday 8 November, Acts of Remembrance will also take place at the War Memorials at the two local churches for serving members of armed forces and veterans – Government advice is that most people should mark the commemoration at home:

  • In Morton Churchyard around the War Memorial, gathering from 10.15am to allow for Test and Trace, with an Act of Remembrance at 10.30am.
  • At Llanymynech War Memorial at 2.30pm for an Act of Remembrance.

Update from Pant Memorial Hall

Pant Memorial Hall with Amistice plaques

We thought readers would be interested in updates from Pant Memorial Hall, so here is the first in what hopefully will become regular news from the hall.

With all the preparation and planning needed to work safely in the ‘new normal’, it was a relief to the committee to be able to finalise our reopening plans in late August. We were also pleased to have so much interest from our regular hirers, as well as some new ones.

The hall has been back in use since Monday September 14th. We are currently accepting bookings up to the end of 2020.

Inevitably things will not be the same for a while. Please understand that we cannot hold some events, our capacity is reduced to 30 people (including up to 12 under-11s), the kitchen is out of use and face coverings are mandated in line with government guidance.


Pant Memorial Hall - main hall for hire
The main hall in Pant Memorial Hall

‘Rule of six’ and ‘test and trace’ procedures also apply. We also ask hirers to do some cleaning before and after their events, and everyone needs to provide us with a short risk assessment. This reassures the committee and all users that we are operating safely and in line with legislation. We continue to monitor the situation and will adapt our procedures as things change.

You can read all the information for hirers and users on our website, or get in touch if you need further help. Please help your event organiser by paying attention to social distancing both in the hall and in the car park, and of course no-one should be at the hall if they have symptoms or are isolating for any reason. We do have a ‘covid-19 emergency box’ but we really hope it won’t be used!

Attendance at all events needs to be pre-booked so that organisers can manage numbers – no walk-ins or public events. Regrettably that means that there will be no autumn bazaar or remembrance service this year. We hope to resume both in 2021.

Thank you to all who have supported us this time; grant funders, some generous donors (you know who you are and we really appreciate you). We are also very grateful to the national volunteers who have given so much help and guidance to village hall committees.

To contact us: call 07913 565708, email secretary@pantmemorialhall.org.uk, see our website www.pantmemorialhall.org.uk , Facebook @pantmemorialhall, Twitter @pantmemhall, or leave us a note in the postbox!