TWO young children have opened a new chapter for Pagham Village Hall.
Four year olds Oliver Berryman and Phoebe Francis cut the ribbon on the building’s new extension.
They attend The Village Pre-School which operates at the hall every weekday morning.
The ceremony last Saturday officially brought the meeting room into being. It has cost Pagham Parish Council just over £200,000 and can seat 60 people.
Groups have been making use of it since it was completed in late December.
Pagham Harbour WI, Pagham Friendship Club and the Mill Farm bingo group are among those taking advantage of the light and airy surroundings.
Pheobe’s father, Simon Francis, 39, of Pagham Road, said: “She was excited about cutting the ribbon. She has been looking forward to it all week.
“I think they’ve had some practice sessions at the pre-school. She’s been coming to the pre-school here for a couple of years.
“We also go to the play area here and we’re looking forward to that being improved this summer.”
The hall is owned by the council and is run by an independent board of trustees.
Philip Coleman, the trustees’ chairman, said: “I’m really proud of this room. I think it’s absoutely superb.
“The people of Pagham and the surrounding area now know we have this wonderful addition to our hall they can come and use.
“It is a tremendous asset to us and gives us a room between the main hall, which is in use most evenings and afternoons, and the committee room.”
Pagham Parish Council chairman Cllr Ray Radmall said plans for the new room were drawn up six years ago.
They were put on hold because the neighbouring United Reformed Church also planned to create new community facilities. That scheme has never been built.
“At last, our new room has actually happened,” he told the 50 or so guests at the opening. “This room is already in big demand. I’m sure it’s soon going to pay for itself.”
The extension is on the hall’s north-east corner and is self-contained. The hall, on Pagham Road, was opened in September 1998.