History

The village originally had a building called the Parish Rooms where indoor functions could be held.  This was quite small and so in the 1930s, Maude Carpenter, wife of a local landowner donated about an acre of land for a parish hall. Just enough money was raised for a building that would last about 10 years and many groups and clubs sprung up to use such a facility. 70 years later it had got to such a sad state of repair that the Parish Hall Charity decided that in the interests of safety that the hall would have to close. The land was sold and the money invested by the charity for the provision of the new village hall.

Following the Second World War, after much negotiation by Messrs Oakley (a local farmer), Beeston and Kimberley, (Parish Councillors at this time) in 1949, the fields adjacent to the vicarage totalling 26 acres was compulsorily purchased for about £1,600 for the use of the village for sport and recreational activities. (Developers were intending to put housing on the land.)

The Cookley Playing Fields Association was set up and registered as a charity [Number 523206], to manage the land on behalf of the local community in that year. The Playing Fields Association encouraged the establishment of many sports clubs on the site since its inception.   A splendid tennis pavilion replaced a very dilapidated wooden structure in 1976 and on 31st May 1978 the Cookley Playing Fields Sports and Social Club was formed. (Public toilets were also opened but later demolished.)

In 2006 at the request of the vicar, Geoffrey Shilvock, representatives from the Parish Hall Charity and the Playing Fields Charity formed a Village Hall Group to proceed with building a village hall and sports club on the playing fields site to replace the old Parish Hall and the Sports & Social Club. This building was completed in December 2010 at a cost of £870,000.
The Playing Field Charity became the Playing Field & Village Hall Charity.


Comments