The Community Hall 100 years - A celebration


"I am old, but I am in my prime." So wrote Clinton Johnston in the voice of the Village Hall, in his entry for the 100 th Anniversary Short Story Competition. How true his words are.


The Hall has stood central to this village since the outbreak of the First World War in 1914. It has survived conflict, Proudly Dressed Overall for its Big Day social change, moves to new technology, shifts in music tastes from tea dances to rock, and use by all manner of groups from the WI to model car racing, from Bridge Club to Zumba.

And all the while it's got better and better with age - recent improvements being the addition of the new Small Hall, the new entrance lobby, a full coat of paint and now new curtains. These enhancements have all been down to hard-working former Chairman Ann Knight and her team of Trustees. If only they could bottle and sell the recipe to give all OAPs such a facelift, they'd be millionaires by now!

The Centenary Open Day on June 14th was testament to the fondness people have for this vital community building. Dozens and dozens of village people came throughout the day. Inside the hall were static displays from all the different groups who use it, photos from the past, much pored-over; and outside in the garden were games and activities. There were displays on stage by the Zumba group, Scouts, Primary School, dancing and TIPPS drama group.

There were around 60 entries for the short story competition, all displayed.

Celebrations continued through the evening with children's entertainment,games, a Mummers' Play, and community sing-along. In Ann's book about thehistory of the Hall, she wrote:

"As it is my privilege to be Chairman of Trustees in the centenary year of the

foundation of the Hall, I wanted to make a permanent record of the part this

simple building has played in the life of the village.

"The tremendous hard work and dedication of so many, given voluntarily over

the years, is inspiring."

Of the day itself, she said:

"The support for this event far exceeded my wildest hopes. Help came from all

parts of the village. People lent photos, set up displays, ran games and cleared up

afterwards with such a good will and the people came in their hundreds to join in

the reminiscence and fun.

"Thank you Tipton, may your hall continue to be at the heart of your community

Ann Smiles - A Hugely for another 100 Years."

Ann, you summed it up perfectly.

Thank YOU for giving Tipton St John a Village Hall to be proud ofand enjoy.

Clinton finished his story with the words: "I am old but I am really looking forward to my 100th birthday celebrations with you."

I think the Hall must have been pretty chuffed with how its centenary party went.

By Jo Earlam

A now a few words from Ann herself

June 14 th 2014 Tipton St John Community Hall Celebration - A Day to Remember

Thank you, God for the ideal weather

Thank you Ottery Town Council, Norman's Trust and

South West Water for grants towards the costs

Thank you, to the Subcommittee who planned the day

Thank you, John and Philip for tidying up the outside on


Thank you, David, Martin, Paul, Jean, Pat and everyone

else who helped to set up on Friday.

Thank you, Vera for helping with the Hall photos and the

short story display

Thank you, Alan and Keith for the flags, bunting and the


Thank you, Jo for organising the short story competition

and the outside games

Thank you, Helen and the Zumba group for their two


Thank you, Louise and the charming young dancers for

their entertainment

Thank you, Jack for the uniform demonstration, the Cubs for the jokes and Felix for the drumming

Thank you. Junior TIPPS for the display of improvisation

Thank you. senior TIPPS for the delightful rehearsed reading of Pygmalion

Thank you, Michael and the school children for the excellent verse speaking and for entering all the

lovely short stories

Thank you, judges who had to select the winners

Thank you, Pre-school, Tipton Ladies, the Patchwork Group, Tipton Cubs and Scouts, TIPPS, Tipton

St John Church, The Car Club and Tipton School for the most interesting and varied static displays

Thank you, everyone who bought my book (still some left if you missed them)

Thank you, everyone who helped run the outdoor games

Thank you, Paul, Patrick and Terry for keeping us refreshed

Thank you, everyone who made and donated scones

Thank you, Terry for the Birthday cake

Thank you, Pat for organising the draw and Pauline and Pat for selling the tickets

Thank you, to those who donated draw prizes and a huge thank you to everyone who bought tickets

Thank you, to Alan and Paul for the public address and Paul for the song words

Thank you, to Colin the entertainer, to the Mummers who were so good and just right for the occasion

Thank you, to Kyle and the TIPPS singers for rounding off the evening

Thank you, for my lovely trough of plants and the plaque for my garden

Thank you, everyone who helped clear up in the afternoon, again in the evening and then on Sunday


Thank you to the Trustees who all helped in many ways before, during and after the event and anyone

else I may have forgotten to mention!

Most of all thank you all for coming and making this

a day for me to remember for the rest of my life.

Ann Knight