While Tyninghame Village Hall is widely appreciated as a beautiful historic conservation grade building, the current physical condition of its facilities pose a significant barrier to wider use. An early priority for the Tyninghame Village Hall Committee when it took on the lease for the Village Hall in 2018 was therefore to make improvements to the interior of the Hall both to increase its energy efficiency and to create a more comfortable environment for users.
The priorities for improvement stemmed from a community survey conducted during the summer of 2018 and an energy audit of the Hall. For local residents, the most frequently cited barriers to use of the Hall were:
- it is a cold and draughty venue due to reliance on ancient and inefficient overhead radiant heaters plus an open fire; the heat loss through lack of insulation also contributes to a chilly environment
- the toilets are antiquated and insufficient – only one male and one female toilet in a Hall that caters for up to 50 people seated and 80 standing
- the basic kitchen facilities – a domestic cooker, small fridge and double sink
- the poor overhead lighting
In addition, a Resource Efficiency Scotland report (Oct 2018) recommended the following steps to improve the building’s thermal performance and to improve comfort conditions for hall users:
- insulating the central roof structure
- install secondary glazing to the existing timber frame windows
- install an alternative heating option, such as wall mounted air-con heat pump units
- replace and upgrade the existing pendant lights with LED lighting.
The potential energy cost savings from implementing these measures was estimated as reducing the electricity charges by approximately £1,095 per annum with a carbon reduction of 3.1 tonnes.
The current owner of Tyninghame Village Hall (the Earl of Haddington) does not wish to spend money on improvements to the building, but he has the right to approve any changes made. The Village Hall Committee agreed to contribute some of its unrestricted reserves towards the costs of refurbishments, in particular those elements that are least likely to appeal to external funders (eg professional fees), and to fund raise for the main part of the costs. The realisation of the improvements to Tyninghame Village Hall has only been possible with the generous support and funding from a range of local and national donors (listed below)
Dunbar and East Linton Area Partnership – £2,000
ELC Community Intervention Fund – £4,797
Dunbar & East Linton Area Partnership – £2,900
Be Green – £5,000
Community Climate Asset Fund – £9,614
Dunbar & East Linton Area Partnership – £8,816
Dunpender Community Council – £400
East Lothian Council COVID-19 Economic Recovery Support Funding – £1000 for dishwasher. Further funds still to be raised
Wooden flooring – sand and seal. Funds still to be raised
Progress to date
In 2019 we installed secondary glazing in the main Hall, toilets and kitchen areas. During the period of COVID restrictions in 2020/21 when there were no Hall bookings and the building has been empty, we have been able to replace the ancient overhead radiant heaters with more modern ATC heaters and installed LED lighting.
In February 2021 we insulated the central roof structure. Prior to this work, we commissioned a Bat Survey to find out if and where we had bats roosting in the Hall and what measures would be needed to protect them. Together, these four measures should make a real difference to the energy efficiency of the Hall and we will have a much warmer and more welcoming environment for our users, especially in winter
In the coming months, our main priority is to modernise and upgrade the toilet area to include 4 toilet cubicles including a separate accessible toilet. We will also create some dedicated storage space for tables and chairs. We have received planning permission, a building warrant and listed building consent and will be appointing contractors in March with a view to completing these works in April/May.
The photos below show the new overhead heaters, lighting and the roof insulation.
Project Lead, Tyninghame Village Hall Committee
10 March 2021
Our wonderful funders and donors.