Hundreds visit official opening of Uley pavilion

Gazette Series: Dame Gilly Lynne cut the ribbon to officiallly open the Uley memorial pavillion on Monday (5951457) Dame Gilly Lynne cut the ribbon to officiallly open the Uley memorial pavillion on Monday (5951457)

A WARM bank holiday, a world-famous choreographer and donated beer appear to be the special ingredients to ensure a fantastic launch for a new sports pavilion in Uley.

Over 400 people enjoyed the sun on Monday at Shadwell Playing Field as the Uley Playing Field Pavilion was officially opened by Dame Gillian Lynne after 15 years of fundraising.

Dame Gillian, as well as having a home in Uley, is best known for her work on theatre productions Cats and Phantom of the Opera and the 88-year-old has recently launched a fitness video for the elderly.

After she cut the red tape for the £205,000 centre, the festivities could begin with a barbecue and old fashioned games such as welly-throwing and tug of war.

Uley Brewery also donated 54 gallons of ale for the event, which the Uley Playing Field Trust sold, ensuring extra funds could go into their coffers for the benefit of the six-acre site.

Trust chairman Duff Hart-Davies said the event was a fantastic result after all the hardwork.

“It went very well indeed, we’re absolutely delighted,” he said.

“There were lots of children and people having picnics. I think a lot of people hadn’t been to the field before and saw what a brilliant field it is and what a brilliant pavilion it is.”

The first pavilion was built in 1961 to honour the memory of men of the village killed during the Second World War.

Forty years after opening the building was beginning to show its age and, in 1999, local stonemason Wayne Fisher and his colleague Jeremy Williams began a weekly lottery to raise funds for a new structure.

They raised an amazing £50,000 over 10 years, and in 2012 a new committee took over the fund-raising, completing the £205,000 needed with donations and grants.

The new pavilion was completed in October last year.

John Hollister, son of Tom Hollister who was one of the 13 men to have lost their lives in the Second World War from Uley, was also a special guest at the event.

The pavilion includes two large and dual-gender changing rooms, a match official’s changing room, a community function room, and fully accessible WCs as well as a sauna.

Uley Playing Field Trust was boosted in its aim of completing the work when, alongside Gloucestershire FA, it was able to secure a £52,422 grant from the Premier League and the FA Facilities Fund.

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