Health and Wellbeing Board Annual Conference in West Berkshire -date for the diary!

21 January 2022 – 10am to 12.30

The Annual Health and Wellbeing Board Conference is back and everyone is invited to take part. Once again, this will be a virtual event via Zoom open to anyone in West Berkshire who has an interest in health and wellbeing.

​Last year’s conference attracted over 100 attendees and was an excellent platform for local engagement on key health issues.

​This year, the event will focus on our plan for improving the health and wellbeing for everyone living in West Berkshire over the next ten years.

There will be workshop session covering five health focussed topics.

Read more and book your Conference place.

New Year Training Opportunities for Village Halls & Community Buildings

Opening of ACRE’S National Village Halls Week

Join CCB for the opening of National Village Halls week at The Victory Hall, Bucklebury – 24th January from 10.30am. (Please note that if we are unable to run this event face to face due to Covid restrictions with will run online)

We are honored that Lord Beynon is opening NVHW this year in a Berkshire Village Hall

The opening is followed by some useful training.

Village Hall Finances

Training will focus;

Funding/Budgeting/Planning/Project Management (Village Hall Refurb/building projects) – Lessons learned & experience shared

Online Booking Systems – Demonstration by Hallmaster

Smart Energy Management Systems – Demonstration by Heating Save

To book your place please use the Eventbrite link;

Training will begin at 12.30pm after the official opening of NVHW and a light lunch which we would like to invite you to join us for.

Safeguarding for Community Buildings in Wokingham Borough
Safeguarding is everyone’s business – make sure you understand your part in keeping vulnerable children and adults at risk safe.

We recommend that everyone in Wokingham Borough involved with running a Community Buildings or venue attends this Safeguarding session. It will provide valuable updates and information on responsibilities for Safeguarding and if you do not have a Safeguarding Policy, we will ensure you get a model document and all the information needed to create your own.
When: 16th February 2022, 11am – 1pm
Where: Online
Booking Link:

Hallmark Level 1 for Halls in Wokingham Borough

Hallmark Levels 1 – 3 are quality standard marks for Village Halls & Community Buildings

They demonstrate to your Community and stakeholders (e.g. Insurance Companies, banks & funders) that your building meets the basic standards (L1) through to exceptional standards (L3) of quality provision.

They also act as an internal audit to reassure Trustees/Management Committees that they are meeting legal obligations and serving the community as directed by their constitution.

Hallmark 1 focuses on the management and administration of the charity.

When: 7th March 2022. 11am – 1pm

Where: Online

Booking Link:

Hallmark Level 2 for Halls in Wokingham Borough

After you have achieved HALLMARK 1, you can attend HALLMARK 2 training. After attending this course and a short site visit you could attain a HALLMARK 2 certificate.

Hallmark 2 focuses on health, safety, security and licenses.

When: 27th April 2022, 11am – 1pm

Where: Online

Booking Link:

Other training (further details to follow)

Hallmark 2 Quality Standards West Berkshire Halls
Health & Safety, Security & Licenses
When: 8 June 2022 11am
Where: Padworth (to be confirmed)
Booking Link:

Low Carbon Community Buildings
If you did not attend the last webinar, then don’t miss Tom MacDonald’s fantastic
When: Wed 11th May 2022 10.30am
Where: Online
Booking Link:

Embracing the digital world: providing services to the community and how
websites and social media can promote the facility
When: 05 May 2022 10.30
Where: Englefield To be confirmed
Booking Link:

Top tips for keeping warm this winter

By Helen Dean, Connecting Communities in Berkshire

As the cold weather sets in, it reminds us of what we can all do to reduce our energy and water usage at home whist staying warm.

Wrap up Warm – wear layers to keep the warmest

Keep the cold out – close doors, and use draught excluder if you need to. Buy thermal linings for curtains to keep the heat in.

Maintain the temperature – keep your main living room at 18–21°C (64–70°F) and the rest of your house at 16°C (61°F) at least. You only need to heat your home when you are in – once your home has heated up for the winter it only takes about half an hour to heat up or cool down, so you can switch the heating back on when you come in.

Have warming food and drinks

Stay Active -keep as active as possible to boost your circulation. Move around at least once an hour and avoid sitting still for long periods. Even light exercise will help keep you warm.

Check out what support you can get – There’s loads of advice on my webpage – This includes discounts off electricity and water for families, and individuals on low-incomes

Village Halls Week 2022 set to challenge England’s 10,000+ rural community buildings to do something different

Village halls must innovate for the future says national charity

National charity and our national body, Action with Communities in Rural England (ACRE), will be raising awareness of the contribution village halls make to rural communities, as well as inspiring the volunteers who run them to get creative and improve their offer to their community.

#VillageHallsWeek will take place Monday 24 January – Sunday 30th January 2022 and will be the fifth incarnation of the popular annual campaign which last year saw 800 halls complete an online ‘Domesday Book’, to mark 100 years since their foundation.

Many village halls are already doing innovative things. Some, like Hovingham village in North Yorkshire, with the help of ACRE Network member – Community First Yorkshire – installed electric car charging points to cater for residents who don’t have the opportunity to charge their cars off street. Others are getting creative on a smaller scale but making equally important contributions to their community. Such was the case in Swallowfield, Berkshire where the hall committee worked with Connecting Communities in Berkshire and the Get Berkshire Active scheme to develop seated musical movement exercise sessions for the elderly and those with long term health conditions to improve health and wellbeing while improving the financial sustainability of the hall.

Deborah Clarke, ACRE’s Village Halls Manager said, “Village Halls Week 2022 will be a celebration of all the innovative things village halls can do to improve their offer to the local community. We’ve been banging the drum about the many good things that halls achieve for some time – from combating loneliness to supporting local businesses. But this year’s campaign will be a bit different. We know there’s some great examples of halls that’ve gone the extra mile by putting on new activities and services for residents, taking action on climate change or taking steps to become more financially resilient. Members of the ACRE Network will be celebrating these pioneering halls and challenging others to make pledges to get similarly creative”.

The volunteers who run these buildings – estimated to number more than 50,000 – are urged to download a campaign pack from ACRE’s website where they will find more information about the campaign, along with resources to help them get involved.