Upgrade breathes life into old hall

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A grand old lady of Bannockburn, the 105-yearold Coronation Hall, should be equipped with upgraded facilities by Christmas, the building’s management committee says.
At present, the hall is owned by the Central Otago District Council and managed by the Bannockburn Community Centre management committee (BCCMC).
However, committee chairwoman Kerry Stainton Herbert this week told The News transfer of ownership to the BCCMC was ‘‘very close’’ and that work on a new extension that would incorporate a new foyer, new toilet, kitchen and meeting room facilities was set to begin.
The upgrade and the change of ownership follow a reprieve granted the hall in 2014 when the structure was deemed not to be at risk of collapse in an earthquake.
‘‘The committee has been fundraising for the upgrade and I think we have raised $20,000 towards the project, which in total will probably come in at about $400,000,’’ Mrs Stainton Herbert said.
Grants had also been received from the Central Lakes Trust and the Lotteries Commission, and the council had some money set aside in its long-termbudget.
‘‘The hall is a vital community hub and this upgrade will really allow it to host a wide range of events, including weddings and concerts,’’ she said.
Details of the successful tender to complete the work would be announced once all contracts were signed.